ABU - ASALKAN BUKAN UMNO

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Sunday, February 26, 2012

Sulaiman Kamal | 8:05 PM | Best Blogger Tips

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He took a prospective bride to stay with him and his two young children in his flat for a week.

Then the delivery driver, 52, sent the 23-year-old woman home to Vietnam and demanded a refund of the $6,800 fee he had paid the matchmaking agency which introduced them.

The reason: He felt the woman was too ugly for him.

But not too ugly, it seems, for him to sleep with her before sending her back.

This was the matchmaking agency's claim after the man, who wanted to be known only as Mr Tan, demanded his money back.


Mr Mark Lin, 48, the owner of Vietnam Brides International Matchmaker, said he refused Mr Tan's demand because he suspected the latter had slept with the woman.

He said that when he asked her about it, she said yes.

Mr Lin added: "If it was the woman who changed her mind, I would have returned him the money. "But he was the one who didn't want her. If I keep giving refunds, my business will go bust. He was the one who chose her in the first place."

Mr Tan denied that he slept with the woman and the dispute went before the Small Claims Tribunal last September.

Last Friday, the judge ruled in Mr Lin's favour, saying he did not have to refund Mr Tan.

Mr Tan went to Mr Lin's agency in August and selected an 18-year-old Vietnamese girl to be his bride.

The teenager went home with him that evening.

"I really liked her so I didn't want to touch her until we were properly married. She slept with my daughter in another bedroom," said Mr Tan.

But the next day, the teenager called her friend to say she was afraid of Mr Tan's children, aged nine and 11, and because of their ages, she felt more like their sister than their mother.

So Mr Tan took her back to the agency.

He said: "I looked up Mark on a Saturday afternoon and he promised to show me more women the following week."

Mr Lin later called him up and said he had a woman available but did not have photos of her.

Mr Tan agreed to go to the airport to meet her on the day she arrived. Mr Lin and an interpreter were also there.

He said: "She looked just like a boy. I didn't like. I could not accept her as my wife."

He claimed that Mr Lin asked him to let the woman stay at his place for a couple of days because he had nowhere to house her.

"They are good with words and said the girls are pitiful because they have to sleep in his office, which is cramped and uncomfortable.

"On Hari Raya Puasa last year, less than a week after she moved in, she said she wanted to go home. There's no point in keeping her if she wants to go home," said Mr Tan.

So he took her to the airport that day and bought her a plane ticket to go home, he said.

He insisted they did not have sex while she was staying with him.

Mr Tan said he tried looking for Mr Lin over the week but to no avail.

A week later, he finally met Mr Lin at his office in Orchard Plaza.

But Mr Lin refused to refund his money.

"I paid him $6,800 but I still didn't get a wife," Mr Tan said.

He said he earns $1,800 a month and lives in an executive flat in Hougang with his children.

He gives his ex-wife $400 monthly.

He and the China-born woman were divorced in 2009 after she allegedly cheated on him and worked as a prostitute.

Mr Tan said his ex-wife is now seeking custody of their daughter.

This was why he wanted to remarry - so that someone could care for the children, which would increase his chances of winning custody of the kids.

Matchmaker's version

Mr Lin, however, had a different story.

He said Mr Tan was trying to hurry things along and that was why both women went home with him soon after meeting him.

Mr Lin confirmed that Mr Tan had paid in cash on the spot after meeting the first woman.

They then went back to Mr Lin's office to apply for a wedding date on the Registry of Marriages website.

But the next morning, Mr Tan called him to complain that the girl refused to let him kiss or touch her.

Mr Lin said he offered to introduce Mr Tan to more women.

The following week, he told Mr Tan about a woman who was available, adding that she was not pretty but would take care of him.

He claimed that Mr Tan was so eager to meet the second woman that he offered to meet them at the airport.

"He took his kids along to the airport, saw her and said he liked her. He even took her to his home," said Mr Lin.

"We took her luggage to his home, and the interpreter and I went back to the office."

Two days later, Mr Tan wanted to apply to register their marriage.

But because he had recently done so with a different woman, he would have to wait three months.

A week later, Mr Lin said Mr Tan told him that he could not "tolerate it any more", referring to the woman's looks.

Said Mr Lin: "I told him that she loved his kids, but he still didn't want her.

"She called the interpreter before she left, and the interpreter told me that she said they slept together and had sex. But he denied it.

"I let him choose if he wanted the woman. If he didn't like her, why did he want to register their marriage?"

Mr Lin, who has been in the matchmaking line for two decades, said it was not the first time a marriage didn't work out.

He said: "Previously, there were people who changed their minds. The customer just topped up some money and got another woman. Everything was settled."

Mr Lin added that the standard protocol would be to pay a deposit, take the woman for a full medical check-up and, if both parties are agreeable, she can go home with the client.

The process takes about two days, he said.

"But that man couldn't wait. He said he wanted a wife to only look after his kids. That's obviously not true."


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