Recent ICAC Cases


03
Mar 2021
Ex-manager of private wet market charged with bribery and theft involving $230,000A former manager of a private wet market was today (March 3) charged by the ICAC with accepting bribes totalling $34,000 from two tenants over stall leasing matters, and stealing rents and interest payments amounting to a total of over $193,000 from three other tenants.Yip Wing-shing, 60, former market manager of Capital Mark Investment Limited (Capital Mark), faces 16 charges – two of agent accepting an advantage, contrary to Section 9(1)(a) of the Prevention of Bribery Ordinance; and 14 of theft, contrary to Section 9 of the Theft Ordinance.The defendant will appear at the Shatin Magistrates’ Courts on Friday (March 5) for the case to be transferred to the District Court for plea.Capital Mark is the operator of the wet market of Sunshine City Plaza in Ma On Shan. A tenant is required to pay an accrued interest if he fails to pay rents on or before the due date.At the material time, the defendant was a market manager of Capital Mark. He was responsible for the daily operation of the aforesaid wet market, including handling tenancy matters and collecting rents and interest payments from tenants.One of the bribery charges alleges that on September 18, 2018, the defendant, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, accepted $9,000 from an electrician as an inducement to or reward for referring a stall of the wet market to the latter for subleasing.Another bribery charge alleges that on January 19, 2019, the defendant, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, accepted $25,000 from a restaurant operator as an inducement to or reward for referring another stall of the wet market to the latter to rent.The remaining 14 charges allege that between January 2, 2018 and November 19, 2019, the defendant stole over $193,000 in total, each ranging from $5,000 to about $30,000, from three other tenants, namely another restaurant operator, a fish stall owner and a fruit stall owner.ICAC enquiries revealed that the sums involved rents and interest payments allegedly collected by the defendant from the three tenants.Capital Mark has rendered full assistance to the ICAC during its investigation into the case.The defendant has been released on ICAC bail, pending his court appearance on Friday.
02
Mar 2021
Engineer of air-conditioning contractor charged with fraud over $310,000 maintenance ordersThe ICAC yesterday (March 1) charged an engineer of an air-conditioning contractor with fraud for concealing from and failing to disclose to his employer his financial interest in the maintenance orders worth totalling over $310,000 when sub-contracting them.Lee Chi-wai, 40, senior project engineer of Jinchat Engineering (Hong Kong) Company Limited (Jinchat), faces one count of fraud, contrary to Section 16A of the Theft Ordinance.The defendant will appear at the Shatin Magistrates’ Courts tomorrow (March 3) for plea.The case arose from an investigation into a corruption complaint which subsequently revealed the above alleged offence.Jinchat is an engineering company providing installation and maintenance services for air-conditioning systems to commercial clients. Its employees are required to declare any financial interest they had in any organisation with which Jinchat has business dealings or competitions.At the material time, the defendant was a senior project engineer of Jinchat. He was responsible for assessing air-conditioning works orders placed by clients of Jinchat, and recommending the company to conduct the works by its employees or subcontract them.In September 2017, Jinchat secured an air-conditioning maintenance project at a commercial building in Fortress Hill.The charge alleges between September 20, 2017 and April 23, 2018, the defendant, by concealing from and failing to disclose to Jinchat his financial interest in the works of the aforesaid project which were sub-contracted by Jinchat to Matchy Engineering Company (Matchy), and with intent to defraud, induced Jinchat to engage Matchy in the works, which resulted in benefit to the defendant or in prejudice to Jinchat.ICAC enquiries revealed that during the abovementioned period, Jinchat awarded six maintenance orders worth totalling over $310,000 to Matchy.Jinchat has rendered full assistance to the ICAC during its investigation into the case.The defendant has been released on ICAC bail, pending his court appearance tomorrow.
26
Feb 2021
Ten charged with bribery and stealing $270,000 from ramen shopsThe ICAC today (February 26) charged 10 former employees of two ramen shops, including managers, chefs and waitresses, with conspiring to steal cash proceeds totalling up to about $270,000 from cash tills, and bribery for conniving the misappropriation.The defendants, all formerly employed by Bright Mark Restaurant Limited (Bright Mark), are Chan Ka-tai, 41, former assistant operations manager; Ng Wai-to, 27, former shop manager; Lam Ting-fung, 27, and Lam Wing-sze, 25, both former captains; Yu Hoi-lun, 24, and Yu Sai-ming, 24, both former senior chefs; Lui Kin-shing, 21, and Man Ka-sing, 23, both former chefs; Lau Sui-lin, 29, and Ma Kwan-tung, 22, respectively former waitress and former part-time waitress.They face a total of 12 charges – three of conspiracy to steal, contrary to Section 9 of the Theft Ordinance and Section 159A of the Crimes Ordinance; seven of offering an advantage to an agent, contrary to Section 9(2)(a) of the Prevention of Bribery Ordinance (POBO); and two of agent accepting an advantage, contrary to Section 9(1)(a) of the POBO.The defendants will appear at the Kwun Tong Magistrates’ Courts next Tuesday (March 2) for the case to be transferred to the District Court for plea.At the material time, all defendants were employed by Bright Mark, which operated a number of ramen shops in Hong Kong under two brand names—Bari-Uma Ramen and Fu-Unmaru.Chan was an assistant operations manager of Bright Mark, who was responsible for inspecting the overall operations of the Tseung Kwan O branch of Bari-Uma Ramen and the Tsim Sha Tsui branch of Fu-Unmaru.According to Bright Mark’s policy, food orders made by customers must be input into a computer system. Staff members are not allowed to place verbal food orders with kitchen staff.Nine of the 12 charges are related to the alleged misappropriation of cash proceeds up to over $220,000 and corrupt connivance of such stealing which took place at the Tseung Kwan O branch of Bari-Uma Ramen between August 2017 and November 2018.One of the charges alleges that shop manager Ng, captain Lam Ting-fung, senior chefs Yu Hoi-lun and Yu Sai-ming, chefs Lui and Man, waitress Lau and part-time waitress Ma conspired together and with a then head chef of Bright Mark to steal cash from the cash till.Another charge alleges that captain Lam Ting-fung, chefs Lui and Man, and waitress Lau conspired together and with the aforesaid head chef to steal cash from the cash till.Three other charges allege that captain Lam Ting-fung, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, offered bribes totalling $6,000 to the aforesaid head chef as an inducement to or reward for conniving Lam Ting-fung’s stealing of cash from the cash till.Four other charges allege that captain Lam Ting-fung, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, offered bribes totalling $9,000 to chef Lui as an inducement to or reward for complying with verbal food orders made to kitchen staff of the branch.The remaining three charges concerned the alleged misappropriation of cash proceeds up to $45,000 and corrupt connivance of such stealing which took place at the Tsim Sha Tsui branch of Fu-Unmaru between August and November 2018.One of the charges alleges that shop manager Ng, captain Lam Wing-sze and part-time waitress Ma conspired together and with the aforesaid head chef to steal cash from the cash till.Two other charges allege that assistant operations manager Chan, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, accepted bribes totalling $4,000 from shop manager Ng as an inducement to or reward for conniving Ng’s stealing of cash from the cash till.Bright Mark has rendered full assistance to the ICAC during its investigation into the case.The defendants have been released on ICAC bail, pending their court appearance next Tuesday.
25
Feb 2021
Bank officer and mother charged with fraud over payroll account openingThe ICAC yesterday (February 24) charged a bank officer and his mother who worked at a Chinese restaurant with conspiracy to defraud the bank of an incentive by causing co-workers of the mother to open payroll accounts with the bank.Lam Ki-fung, 30, business development officer of Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong) Limited (Standard Chartered Bank); and Cheung Pui-kwan, 56, shop manageress of Majesty Seafood Restaurant (Majesty Seafood) and mother of Lam, jointly face one count of conspiracy to defraud, contrary to Common Law.The defendants will appear at the Eastern Magistrates’ Courts tomorrow (February 26) for plea.The case arose from an investigation into a corruption complaint which subsequently revealed the above alleged offence.At the material time, Lam was a business development officer of Standard Chartered Bank posted to a branch in Central. He was responsible for opening accounts for customers. When a customer used a newly opened account for payroll service, the payroll amount concerned would be counted as the defendant’s performance in calculating his quarterly incentive.Lam’s mother, Cheung, was a shop manageress of the Central branch of Majesty Seafood, a Chinese restaurant. She was responsible for making payroll arrangement for frontline workers. The restaurant did not require its staff members to hold an account with a specified bank for receiving payroll.The charge alleges that between April 11 and December 18, 2017, Lam and Cheung conspired together to defraud Standard Chartered Bank by dishonestly causing individuals to open accounts with the bank and making unauthorised money transfers in and out of the accounts, thereby boosting Lam’s sales revenue for the purpose of calculating his quarterly incentive.ICAC inquiries revealed that four co-workers of Cheung and a customer of Majesty Seafood were allegedly caused to open accounts with Standard Chartered Bank. Without the authorisation of the five account holders, sums of money were transferred into their accounts from Cheung’s personal account and then transferred out. Lam was hence paid an extra quarterly incentive totalling $4,520.Standard Chartered Bank and Majesty Seafood have rendered full assistance to the ICAC during its investigation into the case.The defendants have been released on ICAC bail, pending their court appearance tomorrow.
03
Feb 2021
Property agent charged with fraud over stamp dutyThe ICAC today (February 3) charged a property agent for conspiring with a property buyer to deceive the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) into levying a lesser amount of stamp duty by understating the transaction price of a property by $500,000.The ICAC investigation arose from a corruption complaint. Subsequent enquiries revealed the alleged offence.Ng Tsz-hin, 28, former property agent of Style House Properties Agency Limited (Style House Properties), faces one count of conspiracy to defraud, contrary to Common Law.The defendant will appear at the Tuen Mun Magistrates’ Courts on Friday (February 5) for plea.At the material time, the defendant was a licensed property agent of Style House Properties. In September 2016, he arranged a client to view a property in Yuen Long listed for sale at about $2.8 million. The client was interested in purchasing it and the defendant was instructed to negotiate the selling price with the vendor. The client subsequently agreed to purchase the property at $2.5 million. The charge alleges that between September 3 and November 30, 2016, the defendant conspired together with the aforesaid client to defraud the IRD by dishonestly and falsely representing to the department that the purchase price of the abovementioned property was $2 million while the actual price was $2.5 million, and induced the IRD to levy a lesser amount of ad valorem stamp duty.It is alleged that the client would have paid an ad valorem stamp duty of $45,000 less should the IRD accept $2 million as the purchase price.The IRD and Style House Properties have rendered full assistance to the ICAC during its investigation into the case.The defendant has been released on ICAC bail, pending his court appearance on Friday.

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