Gang ritual lands triad members in prison

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 19 January, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 19 January, 2012, 12:00am


A group of men who staged a gangland tribute to the slain leader of a faction of one of Hong Kong's most powerful triad gangs - the Sun Yee On - were jailed for a total of more than seven years yesterday.

All 10 men were convicted of acting like, or claiming to be members of the Sun Yee On after they were arrested for paying tribute to faction leader Lee Tai-lung, nicknamed 'the Baron of Tsim Sha Tsui East', at a ritual in Kowloon City on August 27, 2010.

Their arrests came after a police officer went undercover for several months to expose them.

Lee was chopped to death by rival gangsters from the Wo Shing Wo triad group as he stepped out of his Mercedes-Benz at the Kowloon Shangri-La hotel early one morning in August 2009.

The triad ritual tribute to mark his passing was held about a year after his death during the 'hungry ghosts' festival which in Chinese tradition aims to pacify the souls of the dead.

In Kowloon City Court yesterday, magistrate Johnny Chan Jong-herng sentenced senior Sun Yee On member Lam Sai-hop, 56, and faction leader Law Ka-fai, 37, to 11 months' imprisonment each.

All of the accused were convicted last week.

Magistrate Chan said Lam had used the ritual tribute gathering to bolster his position within the gang. Eight others were convicted of acting as if they were triad members and were given jail terms of between eight and nine months.

The undercover police agent who infiltrated the East Tsim Sha Tsui faction of the Sun Yee On was almost exposed by Law, the court heard earlier.

'Ah Wang', as the constable called himself, worked as a waiter in various pubs and a restaurant during his two years of undercover work.

One day in November 2010 Ah Wang entered a room in the Tsim Sha Tsui pub where Lee was playing poker with two friends.

Law fiercely accused Ah Wang of being an undercover policeman, threatening to sack him.

But Law backed off the next day, telling Ah Wang he had been very drunk when he made the accusation and asked him to stay on.

By that time Ah Wang had already collected useful evidence against the gang members.