Carson Yeung

Carson Yeung had huge surge in earnings, trial hears

Birmingham City owner and late father earned nothing, before income surged to HK$721 million in seven years, money-laundering trial hears

PUBLISHED : Friday, 03 May, 2013, 2:13pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 04 May, 2013, 5:38am

Birmingham City Football Club owner Carson Yeung Ka-sing and his father once reported earning nothing for four or five years, but their income later shot up 300 times to HK$721 million in seven years, a court heard yesterday.

Yeung and his late father's modest backgrounds and the sudden rush of money into and out of their bank accounts were detailed in the District Court after a judge rejected his application for the money laundering trial to be dismissed. The former hairdresser earlier pleaded not guilty to five counts of money laundering between 2001 and 2007.

Prosecutor John Reading SC said the HK$721 million deposited in five accounts was incommensurate with Yeung and his father's combined income of HK$2,159,392.

"The pattern of deposits and withdrawals in the subject bank accounts show placement, layering and integration," he said.

The court heard that Yeung, 53, opened the Vanity hair salon in Kowloon in 1997 and had a taxable income of HK$335,229 that year from the salon and rental income from properties. However, it suffered a loss in the next year and closed in 1999.

His father, Yeung Chung, worked as a caretaker for Inter-Association Property Services and lived on a public housing estate in Kowloon during the same period. His total income for those years was HK$167,283, the prosecution said.

Both Yeung and his father suffered hardship between 1999 and 2003 and reported no income.

In July 2003, his father set up the Yeung Kee vegetable stall in a wet market, which operated until 2006. But it was not a success and he made a humble profit of HK$6,880 between 2004 and 2006. Carson Yeung was director of Universal Management Consultancy between 2004 and 2006.

From 2001, various parties made deposits to their accounts, many for no apparent reason. Some were made by securities firms and a Macau casino company, while others were made by unknown parties. Some 437 deposits, totalling HK$97,518,367, were made in cash.

Yeung became an executive director and chairman of Grandtop International Holdings, which controlled English soccer club Birmingham, in July 2007.

The deposits of HK$721 million in the accounts were virtually identical to the total withdrawn by the end of 2007. There were multiple transactions in which the sums deposited and withdrawn were identical and took place on the same day.

Yeung was arrested in June 2011 and has remained silent under caution. His father and co-accused left Hong Kong for the mainland in July 2008. He died last year.

The case was adjourned until Tuesday.