Mr X denies lover's abortion claim

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 13 November, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 13 November, 2007, 12:00am

Government official says he knew nothing about hostess's pregnancy

A senior government official denied he had asked his lover to have an abortion and had promised to compensate her for it, claiming he did not know about her pregnancy when she blackmailed him after their affair had ended, the District Court heard yesterday.

The official - referred to in court as Mr X - ended his testimony from behind a screen yesterday in the trial against Hui Wing, 36, a Mong Kok karaoke hostess who has pleaded not guilty to blackmail counts in February and May. She is alleged to have left two voicemail messages on Mr X's mobile phone in February asking for as much as HK$500,000.

'You asked her to have an abortion and said you would compensate her for the loss of the baby by becoming a vegetarian for 10 years,' said defence barrister Lily Yew during cross-examination.

Mr X denied the statement, saying Hui had never told him she was carrying his baby when he split with her on February 22 upon his wife's discovery of the affair.

The official said he had learned of the abortion only when Hui told him in a phone text message on March 26 that she had already had it. The message came five days after Mr X and his wife had paid her when she threatened to make public a two-hour videotape that contained intimate footage between the pair in a hotel.

Mr X testified he believed the abortion claim was just a tactic to extort more money from him after they agreed to cut the amount to HK$380,000 following negotiation that ended in mid-March. The couple eventually paid HK$290,000.

His wife, who also testified from behind a screen yesterday, firmly denied their offer of money was to settle the break-up.

Mrs X said she discovered the affair through text messages in her husband's phone, which Mr X left with her when he was in hospital for an operation.

Mr X called Hui to end the affair the next day. She said Hui then blackmailed Mr X later the same day in two calls and during a visit to the hospital the day after. She testified Hui threatened to injure her and the couple's reputation by reporting the affair to Mr X's boss or the media.

'If you love a person, you wouldn't act [like this] so quickly,' Mrs X reasoned.

Mrs X said she believed the affair did carry a certain level of affection, but that Hui was in love with her husband's money.

'This is a disaster. We just wanted to resolve it as soon as possible and minimise our losses, that's it,' Mrs X said when asked about the details of the negotiations with Hui.

Mrs X later decided to report to the police that she had received a call from a strange man and 1,000 copies of a fax at her office voicing the same demand in June - three months after they had paid Hui.

Mrs X's elder sister, Ms Y, who also testified yesterday, had arranged two meetings to bargain for a lower figure with Hui in February at a Mong Kok shopping mall.

She testified Hui had made numerous similar threats if they refused to pay.

Ms Y said she and a friend had managed to negotiate the payoff to HK$380,000.

Ms Y continues her testimony today before Judge Andrew Chan Hing-wai.