Passport pretenders fail their test

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 28 February, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 28 February, 2012, 12:00am


Three mainland university students who tried to sit an English-language test for others were jailed for 10 months yesterday - not for trying to cheat but for being caught with fake passports.

Cai Peipei, 24. Diao Sujin, 23, and Chen Ziqing, 23, pleaded guilty in Tsuen Wan Court to using a false instrument. All were in Hong Kong on two-way permits.

They were caught on Saturday at the Lai King Assessment Centre in Kwai Chung during a Test of English as a Foreign Language exam (Toefl).

The court heard that a supervisor became suspicious when he saw their mainland passports did not have a Hong Kong Immigration Department stamp. When he confronted them they admitted they were forged. Police found their real passports after a search.

The mainlanders said they had been offered 2,000 yuan (HK$2,450) if they sat the exam for others using the forged passports, which they had received by mail from an unknown man. They said they did not know for whom they were taking the exams.

Principal Magistrate Ernest Lin Kam-hung said the men had harmed the system of assessment of an internationally recognised exam.

'Impersonation at an examination may render those involved liable to prosecution for a criminal offence. The HKEAA strives to ensure the examinations are fair and equitable,' the HKEAA said.

It said there had been a case previously of a candidate impersonating someone else during the Advanced Placement examinations.