Recent ICAC Cases

13
May 2022
Three more charged by ICAC with soliciting and accepting bribes from Third Runway Project construction workers

Two site team leaders and a construction worker of a sub-contractor of the Third Runway Project of the Hong Kong International Airport (Third Runway Project) were charged by the ICAC today (May 13) with soliciting and accepting illegal rebates totalling at least over $80,000 from five plumbers and scaffolders for securing their employment with the sub-contractor. Arising from the relevant investigation, the Commission has so far charged a total of nine persons.

Enforcement actions taken by the ICAC last year against illicit acceptance of illegal rebates from construction workers led to successful prosecution of six persons who collected illegal rebates from 11 carpenters of the Third Runway Project. After seeking legal advice from the Department of Justice, the Commission today further charged three other persons in two cases.

Chu Kwun-fai, 49, former site team leader of MLife Engineering Limited (MEL), faces a total of 13 charges – 10 of agent accepting an advantage and three of agent soliciting an advantage, all contrary to Section 9(1) of the Prevention of Bribery Ordinance (POBO).

Zhuang Huitao, 31, site team leader of MEL; and Zhou Sheng, 57, former construction worker of MEL, face a total of six charges – four of agent accepting an advantage, contrary to Section 9(1) of the POBO; and two of conspiracy for agent(s) to accept advantage(s), both contrary to Section 9(1) of the POBO and Section 159A of the Crimes Ordinance.

The defendants were released on ICAC bail, pending their appearance in the West Kowloon Magistrates’ Courts next Tuesday (May 17) for plea.

At the material time, MEL was a sub-contractor of the Third Runway Project responsible for recruiting construction workers to conduct various works. Recruitment was conducted mainly through referrals by construction workers. Chu and Zhuang were team site leaders each leading a team of construction workers to perform plumbing and scaffolding works at the project’s construction site respectively. Zhou was a scaffolder in Zhuang’s team.

The first case took place between August and December 2020. The charges allege that Chu, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, solicited illegal rebates ranged from $50 to $200 per working day from three plumbers working in his team and accepted illegal rebates totalling over $12,000 from the trio as an inducement to or reward for assisting them to secure and continue their employment with MEL and remaining favourably disposed towards one of them.

Another case took place between September 2020 and June 2021. It is alleged that Zhuang and Zhou had conspired with a scaffolder for the two defendants to, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, accept illegal rebates totalling over $43,000 from the scaffolder, as an inducement to or reward for assisting the latter to secure and continue his employment with MEL.

Zhuang had also allegedly accepted illegal rebates totalling over $21,000 from another scaffolder in his team in relation to his employment. Zhuang had allegedly further conspired with the above two scaffolders for himself to accepted an illegal rebate of $3,500 from one of the duo in relation to his employment.

The Airport Authority Hong Kong, the relevant main contractor SAPR JV and MEL have rendered full assistance to the ICAC during its investigation into the cases. ICAC enquiries are continuing and further arrests and prosecutions may be made.

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