Recent ICAC Cases

Apr 2024
Three former insurance agents charged by ICAC jailed for 25 to 34 months for conspiracy to defraud over commissions and bonuses totalling $950,000

Three former insurance agents, charged by the ICAC, were today (April 15) sentenced at the District Court to jail terms ranging from 25 months to 34 months for conspiracy to defraud an insurance company into paying commissions and bonuses totalling about $950,000 by making false representations about the handling agents of 10 policies.

Chan Ka-wo, 38, former branch manager of AXA China Region Insurance Company Limited (AXA), received a jail term of 34 months; Tsang Tsz-long, 30, and Lam Tsz-him, 35; both former insurance agents of AXA, were respectively jailed for 28 months and 25 months. The trio were earlier convicted of one count of conspiracy to defraud, contrary to the Common Law.

In sentencing, Judge Mr Edmond Lee Chun-man remarked that the offence committed by the defendants constituted a breach of trust and the scam involved sophisticated planning by the trio. Hence, immediate custodial sentences were meted out.

The court heard that at the material time, Chan was the up-line manager of Tsang and Lam. In the course of selling an insurance product of AXA, a handling agent was required to declare that he or she had asked the applicant the questions on the policy application form, verified the identity of the applicant and witnessed the applicant’s signature on the policy application form.

Whenever an insurance product was successfully sold, the handling agents and his or her up-line manager would respectively receive commissions and overriding commissions from AXA. They were also entitled to various kinds of bonuses.

Between November 25, 2014 and September 28, 2017, the three defendants conspired together to use 10 policies in which Lam, Tsang and others were falsely represented as the handling agents to defraud AXA to release commissions and bonuses totalling about $950,000 to them.

The ICAC investigation arose from a corruption complaint. Enquiries revealed that Lam and Tsang did not handle those insurance policies, which eventually lapsed due to default payment of premiums.

AXA had rendered full assistance to the ICAC during its investigation into the case.

The prosecution was today represented by prosecuting counsel Michael Delaney, assisted by ICAC officer Leung Po-shan.

The ICAC will continue to collaborate with the insurance industry in providing integrity training to practitioners, as well as tips on managing staff integrity for managerial staff. For more information, please visit the Ethics Promotion Website for the Insurance Industry produced by the Hong Kong Business Ethics Development Centre.

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