Suspected fake books withdrawn
More than 600 copies of novels by authors Choi Lan and Erica Li Man have been withdrawn from the shelves of 69 government libraries on suspicion that they are pirated copies.
A spokesman for the Leisure and Cultural Services Department said it had been the practice not to buy pirated books, but that after media reports on the issue the department had reason to believe the withdrawn books were fake.
The spokesman said the novels would be held for inspection and staff had been instructed to pay special attention to the purchase of books in future.
He said that pending an investigation, the department might take action against the supplier, apologise to the authors and destroy the books.
'Books for the public libraries are acquired through contractors and suppliers,' he said.
'There is a standard clause in all contracts for the supply of library materials that the contractor should not provide pirated editions and would be held responsible for books supplied.'
The suspected pirated books by Choi and Li Man are printed in simplifed Chinese characters and are believed to have been published on the mainland.