Up Close with Lee Kuan Yew: Insights from colleagues and friends

John Harding’s book, Escape from Paradise – Paperback and Kindle Versions


Now, available in Kindle and Paperback! Free Kindle if you purchase Paperback. After buying Paperback, go for the free Kindle!

It took me two and a half evenings to complete your un-put-downable book…it is a unique contribution to the appreciation of a life in Singapore. Thank you for having written it. C. V. Devan Nair, former President of Singapore.

Bought the book from Select this weekend and can’t put it down! It’s a great read! And so nostalgic for me—the good old days! Glen Goei, writer and director of the Miramax film That’s the Way I Like It and who played the title role opposite Anthony Hopkins in the London production of M. Butterfly. Mr. Goei’s latest film is The Blue Mansion – Click for the trailer!

It is a remarkable story and so full of intrigue that it reads at times like fiction.Jonathan Burnham, Editor in Chief & President, Talk Miramax Books.

“It’s quite a story The legendary Alice Mayhew, Vice-President & Editorial Director, Simon & Schuster.

This book out-Dallas, Dallas. No one has written so well of the other side of paradise,Francis T. Seow, former Solicitor General of Singapore

ThunderBall Films is successfully putting together the movie production of Escape from Paradise and has received a new LOI (Letter of Intent) from actress Bai Ling who starred with Richard Gere in the film Red Cross.

This includes a commitment from a CPA firm who does tax credit financing in Ireland, a possible location to film, as part of the package needed for investors – along with the CPA firm’s commitment to apply for and finance the tax credits if ThunderBall does shoot in Ireland and what portion of the budget they would provide.
For inquiries, please contact John Harding at jbharding@gmail.com.

Escape from Paradise – the Promotional Trailer


Copyright © 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 John Harding

Singapore Terrorist Extradited to America

Singapore Terrorist Lim Yong Nam Facing Justice in America

Singapore Terrorist Lim Yong Nam Facing Justice in America

Singaporean terrorist, Lim Yong Nam (a.k.a. Lin Rongnan, Steven Lim and Yong Nam Lim) is finally in United States custody after Indonesian police handed him over to the U.S. counterparts in Jakarta on March 31st.

Lim, who faces charges for breaching an American trade embargo against Iran, was sent to Jakarta from Batam island, where he had been held while the U.S. extradition request was being reviewed by Indonesia.

Indonesia has no formal extradition agreement with the US, but Indonesian law allows for such requests to be considered on a case- by-case basis. A Batam district court granted the request last year.

Indonesian President, Joko Widodo, endorsed the court’s ruling in January.

Singapore lawyer Boy Kanu, who represented Lim in Batam, said his client had tried to appeal to be sent to Singapore instead.

Singapore’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said on March 31st it has contacted the relevant US authorities to ask for information on the legal process that Lim will face in the US. “We have also requested the US to ensure that Mr. Lim is accorded his due legal rights. MFA will continue to discharge our consular responsibilities by providing Mr. Lim with the necessary assistance,” an MFA spokesman said in a harshly critical statement. It appears that the MFA is sympathetic to the terrorist.

Lim is accused of acquiring 6,000 radio frequency modules, improvised explosive device (IED) triggers, for export to Iran. The U.S. had asked Singapore to extradite him in 2011, but Singapore High Court Judge, sympathetic Choo Han Teck, found that the crime he was accused of was not an offence in the Republic. Really?

Lim had been held in Batam since October 2014 after he went to the island supposedly to attend a “trade exhibition.”

In 2011, Lim was indicted along with three other Singaporeans and an Iranian national by the U.S. Department of Justice for conspiring to allow electronics components from the US to be exported illegally to Iran instead of their stated final destination, which was Singapore.

Normally, shipments of U.S. arms via Singapore to Iran are illegal. The arms trade passing through Singapore is made possible by bribing Singapore officials for the issuance of false Singapore End-User Certificates.

The parties in an honest arms deal will file an End-User Certificate, noting what is being sold, who is selling it and to whom it is being sold. There is an understanding that the receiving party does not intend to transfer the weapons to a third country. For arms you need a valid End-User Certificate to obtain an export license from the U.S.

The arms traffickers had to have the cooperation of the Singapore officials to issue a false End-User Certificate to re-export the IED devices to Iran.

In Singapore an End-User Certificate is issued by the Trade Control Branch under the Director-General of Singapore Customs. Mr. Fong Yong Kian.

Apparently, Singapore is very active in the illegal arms trade. First Balldev Naidu, and now this.

The US alleged that 16 of the modules were found later in improvised explosive devices in Iraq that had not been detonated. The remainder of the 6,000 IED triggers most likely killed many people in Iraq, including Americans.

12/20/2016 Update:

In Washington, D.C., Lim Yong Nam, aka Steven Lim, 42, a citizen of Singapore, pleaded guilty today to a federal charge stemming from his role in a conspiracy that allegedly caused thousands of radio frequency modules to be illegally exported from the U.S. to Iran. At least 16 of the components were later found in unexploded improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in Iraq. Lim now faces sentencing. Justice takes its course…

Read more: https://sputniknews.com/world/201612161048625566-singaporean-iran-electronics/

4/28/2017 Update: Singaporean convicted — Many agencies zoomed in on Lim Yong Nam

Lim Yong Nam, aka Steven Lim, 43, a citizen of Singapore, was sentenced today to 40 months in prison for his role in a conspiracy that caused thousands of radio frequency modules to be illegally exported from the U.S. to Iran, at least 14 of which were later found in unexploded improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in Iraq.

The investigation of Lim Yong Nam was jointly conducted by ICE Homeland Security Investigations special agents in Boston and Los Angeles; FBI agents in Minneapolis; and Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security agents in Chicago and Boston, the US Justice Department revealed.

Substantial assistance was provided by the U.S. Department of Defense, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the State Department’s Directorate of Defense Trade Controls, the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, and the Office of International Affairs in the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, particularly the Justice Department Attaché in the Philippines, as well as the FBI and HSI Attachés in Singapore and Jakarta.

U.S. law enforcement authorities thanked the governments of Singapore and Indonesia for the substantial assistance that was provided in the investigation of this matter.
The prosecution was handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ari Redbord of the District of Columbia and Trial Attorney Julie Edelstein of the National Security Division’s Counterintelligence and Export Control Section.



6 comments to Singapore Terrorist Extradited to America

  • Martin Loh

    Mr Lim Yong Nam a terrorist? Are you serious? Seems to me that the Hussein who has usurped the powers of the American Presidency is more a terrorist than Mr Lim. After all, its evident to all, that Hussein has yet to bring himself to welcome the liberation of Palmyra by the Russians and the forces of Bashir Assad. Does that not say something about Hussein’s terrorist sympathy, not to mention the treason he is committing against Amarika. How about the spineless Jokowi government that colluded with Amarika on the Lim’s case. Has it never dawned on Mr Harding that Indonesia is a place where terrorists are running amuck. If those guys are not terrorists, they’re sure on their way to becoming terrorists. Yah.

    • John Harding

      As Lim Yong Nam was sending his IED triggers to Iran, he is on the side of Iran and Assad. As for Indonesia (and Malaysia where two were beheaded recently), I am well aware of terrorists in Indonesia, Malaysia, and in the Philippines. Not sure I see the logic in your comment, however.

  • Jim

    i dont understand how is a rf module considered as “ARM” ?

    rf module is used everywhere, in your car key remote or in your gate opener for example

    you can buy it almost everywhere, you can even buy it on amazon , try to google “buy rf module”

    the bad guy is the one misuse it , not the seller

  • Martin Loh

    Can’t see the logic or your misplaced sense of political correctness and need to prop your discredited Amarikana narrative would not allow you to countenance that your America consorts and sponsors terrorists, like ISIS, when it suits the US. Surely Mr Harding would not have us believe that it was the US that drove ISIS out of Palmyra. As for Mr Lim, any exporter would have great difficulty keeping abreast of the copious amount of sanctions which Imperial America unilaterally imposes on countless countries which it doesn’t like. Besides, are Singaporean exporters the only culprits, or are they targeted because they represent easy pickings. After all, it is hard to imagine how a small Singapore could resist a powerful US. One wonders, if the US dare target similar exporters from, say, China. Imagine what would be the US chance of success. Would it be accurate to say that the response from the Chinese side would be something more robust, something like a ‘ #### you.’ That being the case, is it not accurate to conclude that America is doing what it does best – browbeating a small country to show, that despite its tottering stage, it can still impose its laws beyond its shores. Yah.

  • John Harding

    Jim – An rf module is a weapon, when it is used to trigger an IED. Lim knew exactly what he was doing – killing Americans,

    Martin – Wrong, I have no sense of political correctness. Obviously, it was not the US, but Russia and Assad that drove ISIS out of Palmyra. The US could target Lim and his gang because they were dealing in a US-manufactured product. If China had done the same, they would have resisted extraditing Lim – and you are right on that. Lim’s mistake was to travel out of Singapore’s protection granted him by Choo Han Teck. The US simply exercised the law where possible. That’s not browbeating – that is justice and Lim was stupid.

  • John Harding


    Official Website of the Department of Homeland Security Report

    Singapore man extradited to the US for plot involving the illegal export of bomb components later found in Iraq

    WASHINGTON – A Singapore man has been extradited to the U.S. to stand trial on charges stemming from his alleged role in a conspiracy to illegally export radio frequency modules to Iran, which were later found in unexploded improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in Iraq.

    Lim Yong Nam, aka Steven Lim, 42, was extradited from Indonesia to stand trial in the District of Columbia. The extradition was announced Monday by Assistant Attorney General for National Security John P. Carlin; U.S. Attorney Channing D. Phillips of the District of Columbia; Director Sarah Saldaña of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE); Executive Assistant Director Michael Steinbach of the FBI’s National Security Branch; and Under Secretary of Commerce Eric L. Hirschhorn.

    Lim had been detained in Indonesia since October 2014 in connection with a U.S. request for extradition. He is scheduled to make his initial appearance Monday afternoon in federal court in the District of Columbia, where he was indicted June 23, 2010. Lim faces one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States, one count of smuggling, one count of illegal export of goods from the United States to Iran, one count of making false statements to the United States government and one count of making false statements to law enforcement.

    “The indictment alleges that Lim conspired to defraud the United States and defeat our export controls by sending U.S.-origin components to Iran instead of their stated final destination of Singapore,” said Assistant Attorney General Carlin. “Several of those components ultimately ended up in unexploded improvised devices in Iraq. This case, including the successful extradition of Lim, demonstrates our efforts to vigorously pursue and bring to justice those who threaten our national security.”

    “Thanks to the efforts of law enforcement here and abroad, Lim Yong Nam will now appear in an American courtroom to face charges involving the illegal export of sensitive technology,” said U.S. Attorney Phillips. “As alleged in the indictment, the parts at issue here wound up in Iran and then on the battlefields in Iraq. The extradition of this defendant demonstrates our commitment to aggressively investigating and prosecuting those who violate our export controls and threaten our nation’s security.”
    “Improvised explosive devices (IEDs) have injured or killed thousands of military service members overseas. The U.S.-made products Mr. Lim is accused of illegally exporting were found in several of the devices used against America’s warfighters,” said ICE Director Saldaña. “After a long investigative process, Mr. Lim is back on U.S. soil to answer for his actions.”

    “The illegal export of restricted U.S. technology is extremely harmful to our national security,” said Executive Assistant Director Steinbach of the FBI’s National Security Branch. “In this case the technology had lethal applications and was used in improvised explosive devices in Iraq which endangered U.S. and coalition forces. This investigation was a coordinated effort by many agency partners and shows our determination to identify and bring to justice all those who steal sensitive technology.”

    “The extradition of Lim Yong Nam highlights the significant cooperation of U.S. law enforcement agencies and our international partners to pursue and prosecute those who pose a threat to our national security, especially to U.S. service members overseas,” said Under Secretary Hirschhorn. “I commend the outstanding efforts of all of the agencies involved in the case.”

    According to a superseding indictment that was returned against Lim and other defendants in September 2010, IEDs were the major source of American combat casualties in Iraq. The conspiracy alleged in the indictment involved radio frequency modules that have several commercial applications, including in wireless local area networks connecting printers and computers in office settings. These modules include encryption capabilities and have a range allowing them to transmit data wirelessly as far as 40 miles when configured with a high-gain antenna. These same modules also have potentially lethal applications. Notably, during 2008 and 2009, coalition forces in Iraq recovered numerous modules made by the Minnesota firm that had been utilized as part of the remote detonation system for IEDs.

    The superseding indictment alleges that between June 2007 and February 2008, Lim and others caused 6,000 modules to be purchased and illegally exported from the Minnesota-based company through Singapore, and later to Iran, in five shipments, knowing that the export of U.S.-origin goods to Iran was a violation of U.S. law. In each transaction, Lim and others made misrepresentations and false statements to the Minnesota firm that Singapore was the final destination of the goods.

    Similarly, according to the superseding indictment, Lim and others caused false documents to be filed with the U.S. government, in which they claimed that Singapore was the ultimate destination of the modules. At the time of these activities, Lim and others were allegedly communicating with one another about U.S. laws prohibiting the export of U.S.-origin goods to Iran. However, in November 2009, Lim told U.S. authorities that he had never participated in illicit exports to Iran, the superseding indictment alleges.

    The superseding indictment alleges that several of the 6,000 modules the defendants routed from Minnesota to Iran were later discovered by coalition forces in Iraq, where the modules were being used as part of IED remote detonation systems. In May 2008, December 2008, April 2009 and July 2010, coalition forces found at least 16 of these modules in unexploded IEDs recovered in Iraq, the indictment alleges.