Parents who had gathered to file a RBP complaint in 26th June, 2019

Thimphu District Court convicts BEO owners in Learn and Earn program

Jurmey Tshewang and Tenzin Rigden of the Bhutan Employment Overseas (BEO) are sentenced concurrently to a total of 7 years and 11 months by the Thimphu District Court.

Of this they got 5 years each for making false Bank of Bhutan accounts (guarantor) of the 697 students, who participated in the LEP program.

They were actually liable for 2,091 years of jail time each for all the counts of offences (3 years for each offence) but the judgment applied the charges concurrently to make it five years

Both defendants were also found guilty of making false pay slips of the guarantors or parents of 730 youths who took part in the LEP program for 3 years totaling 2,190 documents. They sent the youths to Japanese language schools.

There were both liable to 2,190 years of jail time each if one year was applied per document but both were sentenced concurrently to 2 years 11 months of imprisonment with option to pay Thrim-thue of Nu 131,250 each.

Both the defendants have appealed to the High Court.

The parent filed a complaint to the RBP on 27 June 2019 to the RBP. The case was sent after a RBP investigation to the Office of Attorney General (OAG) for prosecution in 22 October 2019.

OAG charge sheeted Jurmey Tshewang and Tenzin Rigden and BEO staff before the Thimphu District Court on 14 December 2019, on charges of forging the Bank of Bhutan (BoB) bank balance, forging pay slips of the sponsors of the students, and larceny by deception for illegal deduction of Nu 7,500 as a translation fee from each student.

The LEP program has come in for much controversy after deaths and illness among students and allegations of them being cheated and mistreated.

This paper did a series of investigative stories on the issue.

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