Yeo Hiap Seng v Australian Food Corp Pte Ltd and Another

CourtHigh Court (Singapore)
JudgeGoh Phai Cheng JC
Judgment Date23 February 1991
Neutral Citation[1991] SGHC 30
Citation[1991] SGHC 30
Publication Date19 September 2003
Date23 February 1991
Plaintiff CounselAndre Yeap (Allen & Gledhill)
Defendant CounselAng Kim Leong (Ang, Netto, Rama & Wilson)
Docket NumberSuit No 844 of 1990
SubjectEffects of drawing a cheque,Commercial Transactions,Service of writ at last registered address on record,s 35(1) Sale of Goods Act 1979 [UK],Defendant not allowed to set up by way of set-off a counterclaim for damages for breach of the underlying contract,Cheques,Dishonour,Second defendant took no part in the 'without prejudice' negotiations,No reasonable explaination for failing to enter appearance,'Without prejudice' negotiations,Application to expunge parts of affidavit relating to 'without prejudice' negotiations between plaintiffs and first defendants,When buyer is deemed to have accepted goods from the seller,Trial,Counterclaim a separate action and not a triable issue for setting aside default judgment,Application for summary judgment on proceeds of a dishonoured cheque,Acceptance of goods,Non-appearance by defendant,No notice of change of registered address with Registry of Companies,Civil Procedure,Contents,Whether expunged parts should apply to proceedings against second defendant as well,Affidavits,Summary judgment,Banking,ss 27 & 55 Bills of Exchange Act (Cap 23),Whether cheque should be honoured in absence of a total failure of consideration,Sale of goods

There are three appeals in this suit. The first appeal is against a decision given by the learned assistant registrar on 4 January 1991 dismissing an application made by the first defendants to set aside a judgment entered against the first defendants in default of appearance with costs fixed at $800.

The second appeal is against a decision given by the assistant registrar on 10 January 1991 ordering that:

(a) the second defendant`s application that para 25 to 30 of the affidavit of James Loke filed on 6 September 1990 and the exhibit referred thereto as `JL-4` filed in support of the application for summary judgment against the second defendant herein be expunged from the records in these proceedings be dismissed;

(b) paras 25 to 30 of the said affidavit of James Loke filed on 6 September 1990 be expunged in so far as proceedings against the first defendants are concerned and the said affidavit shall be so endorsed on the first page thereof and paras 25 to 30 thereof and exh `JL-4` thereto be sidelined in red; and

(c) the second defendant do pay the plaintiffs` costs fixed at $600 forthwith.

The third appeal is against a decision of the learned assistant registrar who granted summary judgment on 1 October 1990 against the second defendant for the sum of $54,500 to the plaintiffs with interest and costs.

The plaintiffs are manufacturers of fruit juices, soft drinks and other beverages and the first defendants are customers of the plaintiffs. The second defendant is a director of the first defendants. The plaintiffs` claim against the first defendants is for the proceeds of a cheque no 390463 post-dated 20 August 1989 for the sum of $54,500 drawn by the first defendants on the Rochor Road Branch of the DBS Bank of Singapore, which was dishonoured on presentation for payment. The plaintiffs were requested by the bank to `refer to drawer`.

The plaintiffs` claim against the second defendants is based on a contract dated 17 July 1989 made between the plaintiffs and the second defendant which reads:

Date: 17 July 1989

To: Yeo Hiap Seng

950, Dunearn Road

Singapore 2366

Attn: Mr CT Yeow

Dear Sir

I, Amy Tan Meng Choo of I/C No 0978214A of 18, Chu Lin Road Singapore 2366, and a director of Australian Corp Pte Ltd, a company registered in the Republic of Singapore hereby guarantee that the DBS Cheque No 390463 for the sum of S$54,500 issued in favour of Yeo Hiap Seng Ltd will be honoured.

Yours faithfully,


Amy Tan Meng Choo


The above `guarantee` was given by the second defendant on the letter-head of Australian Food Corp Pte Ltd.

Sometime in July 1989, a contract was entered into between the plaintiffs and the first defendants for the plaintiffs to produce and supply a kiwi fruit juice drink in cans to the first defendants` customer in Taiwan. The said contract provided, inter alia, that the plaintiffs would produce the fruit juice from kiwi fruit juice concentrate supplied by the first defendants in accordance with certain agreed procedures and the specifications supplied by the first defendants. The kiwi fruit juice concentrate was produced by Tuara Foods Co-operative Ltd in New Zealand and shipped to the plaintiffs in Singapore on the instructions of the first defendants. A total of 10,500 cartons were produced by the plaintiffs and shipped in five container loads to the first defendants` customer in Taiwan. Each carton contained 24 cans of fruit juice drink produced by the plaintiffs. The plaintiffs had produced more than 10,500 cartons of the fruit juice drink and the excess were held in their possession pending the placement of further orders from the first defendants. The first defendants had paid the plaintiffs an initial part-payment of US$42,000, the equivalent of S$81,738.84.

The said DBS cheque for the sum of $54,500 was issued by the first defendants to the plaintiffs for the balance of moneys due and owing by the first defendants to the plaintiffs for the 10,500 cartons of fruit juice drinks produced and supplied to the first defendants` customer in Taiwan. The 10,500 cartons of canned kiwi fruit juice were shipped to and received by the first defendants` customer in Taiwan on 29 July 1989.

The abovementioned facts are not in dispute. At the commencement of the hearing, counsel for both defendants urged this court to deal first with the second appeal, namely, the appeal relating to the application to expunge certain parts of the affidavit of James Loke filed on 6 September 1990 and the exhibit therein referred thereto as `JL-4`, as he was of the view that the outcome of the other two appeals will depend on the outcome of this appeal. I heard this appeal on 6 February 1991 and it was adjourned to 8 February 1991 when I dismissed the appeal with costs fixed at $1,000 to be paid to the plaintiffs by both defendants. I now give my reasons.

The parts of the said James Loke`s affidavit, which the defendants have taken objection to, relate to `without prejudice` negotiations between the parties with the view to reaching an amicable settlement regarding the first defendants` complaint about the kiwi fruit juice supplied to the first defendants` customer in Taiwan. The second defendant did not take part in nor was she represented at the negotiations.

With respect to that part of the said order of the assistant registrar of 10 January 1991 expunging parts of James Loke`s affidavit filed on 6 September 1990 in so far as proceedings against the first defendants are concerned, the defendants contend that those expunged parts should...

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3 cases
  • Wong Fook Heng v Amixco Asia Pte Ltd
    • Singapore
    • Court of Three Judges (Singapore)
    • 24 March 1992
    ...493; [1974] 2 All ER 381 (folld) Westlake v Adams (1858) 5 CB (NS) 248; 144 ER 99 (refd) Yeo Hiap Seng v Australian Food Corp Pte Ltd [1991] 1 SLR (R) 336; [1991] SLR 567 (folld) Bills of Exchange and Other Negotiable Instruments–Cheques–Option on property paid for with cheque–Cheque dishon......
  • Lim Beng Yaw Admen v GT Dollar Pte Ltd
    • Singapore
    • Magistrates' Court (Singapore)
    • 16 June 2021
    ...of exchange, save in exceptional circumstances or upon strong grounds: see Yeo Hiap Seng v Australian Food Corp Pte Ltd and another [1991] 1 SLR(R) 336 (“Yeo Hiap Seng”) at [33] and Newman v. Lever (1887) 4 T.L.R. 91. This is so even if the counterclaim giving rise to the claim of set-off i......
  • Willas-Array Singapore (Pte) Ltd and Another v Hsin Semiconductor Pte Ltd
    • Singapore
    • District Court (Singapore)
    • 6 August 2007 Order 14 proceedings the law is clear and well established. The law is clearly stated in Yeo Hiap Seng v. Australian Food Corp Pte Ltd [1991] SLR 567 where the High Court stated as [I]n an application for summary judgment against a defendant on the proceeds of a dishonoured cheque, a def......

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