Lawyer loses Hunghom flats claim

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 24 February, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 24 February, 2011, 12:00am

A lawyer yesterday lost his HK$18 million claim for lost fees against a consortium of Sun Hung Kai Properties and New World Development, who he said reneged on a contract.

Calvin Ng Chun-kong, sole proprietor of law firm Ko and Co, was hired to handle conveyancing transactions at the once controversial Hunghom Peninsula estate. He earlier told the High Court First Star Development, a joint venture of Sun Hung Kai and New World, unlawfully terminated his services in 2004 to handle conveyancing for up to 2,470 flats of the harbourfront estate.

First Star, at the time owned by Wai Kee Holdings, built the estate of seven blocks of Home Ownership Scheme flats under the Private Sector Participation Scheme. First Star hired Ng's firm to give free legal advice to the developer, while it would make profit from handling conveyancing for flat buyers. However, the government halted construction and sale of subsidised HOS flats in 2002.

Ng claimed First Star was bound by their contract to retain his firm. The Court of First Instance ruled there was no basis for his claim.

Deputy High Court judge Ian Carlson said: 'These parties had contracted on the basis of a PSPS [the private sector participation scheme] and nothing else, with all the risk and advantages this brought for each.'