Recent ICAC Cases

04
Nov 2021
Estate agents charged by ICAC with using false property transaction documents to deceive agency

Two estate agents were yesterday (November 3) charged by the ICAC with using transaction documents of 11 bogus property transactions, which involve agency commissions totalling over $7.2 million, to deceive their property agency.

The ICAC investigation arose from a corruption complaint. Upon completion of the investigation, the ICAC sought legal advice from the Department of Justice, which advised pressing a total of 11 charges against two former estate agents of Hong Kong Property Services (Agency) Limited (HKP), Lam Yee-hang, 45, and Li Wing-tung Selina, 58.

The duo jointly face two counts of conspiracy as agent to use document with intent to deceive principal, contrary to Section 9(3) of the Prevention of Bribery Ordinance (POBO) and Section 159A of the Crimes Ordinance. Lam alone further faces nine counts of agent using document with intent to deceive his principal, contrary to Section (3) of the POBO.

The defendants were released on ICAC bail, pending their appearance in the Kowloon City Magistrates’ Courts tomorrow (November 5) for plea.

At the material time, Lam was the branch manager of a branch of HKP in Ho Man Tin while Li was an estate agent working in another branch of HKP in Kowloon City. Both branches were under the supervision of a senior district director.

HKP maintained two lists respectively naming estate agents with no turnover for three consecutive months and nine consecutive months. HKP might give warnings to estate agents on the lists and suggest them to resign. Two down-line estate agents of Lam and Li were on the lists (the lists) when the alleged offences took place between November 2017 and August 2019.

Nine of the charges allege that Lam, with intent to deceive HKP, used nine sets of property transaction documents in relation to four properties of a private housing estate in Ho Man Tin and five properties in an industrial building in Cheung Sha Wan, which contained false, erroneous or defective statements that seven down-line estate agents of Lam were the handling agents of the nine property transactions, to mislead HKP.

The remaining two charges allege that Lam and Li conspired together with the aforesaid senior district director, with intent to deceive HKP, to use two sets of property transaction documents in relation to another two properties in the above industrial building, which contained false, erroneous or defective statements that Li and two down-line estate agents of Lam were the handling agents of two property transactions, to mislead HKP.

ICAC enquiries revealed that the 11 property transactions, which would involve agency commissions totalling over $7.2 million, were fabricated. It is alleged that the defendants had used the relevant transaction documents to assist two down-line estate agents of Lam and Li to be removed from the lists.

HKP has rendered full assistance to the ICAC during its investigation into the case.

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