Trader caught after failing to return HK$17m in jewellery
A jewellery trader was arrested on Wednesday night at the Lok Ma Chau border checkpoint while attempting to return to the mainland after having failed to return HK$17 million worth of jewellery to various traders following an exhibition last week.
John Yan, 30, a two-way permit holder, was escorted by police on Thursday back to his company, Diamond City, located in the Hung Hom Commercial Centre, where detectives seized numerous items. Earlier in the day, police retrieved HK$4 million worth of jewellery from his home.
Acting Superintendent Chung Chi-ming of the Kowloon City district crime squad said Yan had set up the one-man company two years ago in Hong Kong and established relationships that won the trust of many local jewellers.
Last month, he had borrowed jewellery from over 30 of these traders to take part in the Hong Kong International Jewellery Show at the Convention and Exhibition Centre in Wan Chai last week, promising to pay them for goods he sold and return any unsold goods when the show ended.
When Yan did not return the goods or make any payment, the traders contacted the police.
The police are attempting to retrieve the traders’ money and any outstanding jewellery, but Chan said it was possible that some of the jewellery had been sold to people outside of Hong Kong,
Chung appealed other traders who had come across suspicious jewellery or had traded with Yan to contact the police.