Teen stole family jewels and cash

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 28 July, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 28 July, 2005, 12:00am

A 17-year-old girl yesterday admitted stealing more than half a million dollars worth of jewellery, cash, gold Rolex watches and other goods from her relatives while she stayed with them for the summer holidays.

Kong Kam-mei sold most of the goods to shops, the Tsuen Wan Court heard.

The teenager pleaded guilty to one charge of stealing goods valued at $481,936 from a flat in Tsing Yi Estate and another of stealing property valued at $66,000 from a flat on Bonham Strand, Sheung Wan.

The court heard that Kong stayed with an aunt, Ng Pik-chu, and two cousins at the Bonham Strand flat for the first half of August last year and then moved in with another cousin, Lo Cho-fai, in Yee Yip House, Tsing Yi Estate.

She stole items on several occasions from unlocked drawers and bedside cabinets at her relatives' homes, the prosecution said.

She was caught after her mother told her aunt over the telephone that she had once noticed Kong with a jewellery box containing jade bangles, jade pendants and gold bracelets.

A search at the two homes revealed that the articles were missing, and Kong confessed to the thefts when confronted by her cousins on November 3.

Ms Ng took her to Tsing Yi police station the following day and she was arrested.

Only a Sony digital camera, valued at $3,000, was recovered.

Kong told police she did not think about the consequences when she stole and that she was sorry.

In mitigation, Kong's lawyer said she stole the goods because she was immature.

Kong was remanded in custody to appear again on August 10 for sentencing by principal magistrate Tong Man.