Cheung denies seeking cash aid
The chairman of the failed Hong Kong Mercantile Exchange Barry Cheung Chun-yuen denied yesterday that he had sought help from a triad-linked businessman and a developer to resolve his company's financial crisis.
Cheung's denial came after Next Magazine reported yesterday that Cheung had asked controversial businessman Kwok Wing-hung, nicknamed "Shanghai Boy", for HK$20 million. Kwok was reported to have links with triad activities.
The report added that New World Development chairman Henry Cheng Kar-shun was also approached by Cheung, who wanted to sell the exchange's shares to Cheng.
Cheung denied having made any such approaches. "They never happened," he said in a statement.
Kwok said in a statement last night that he did not know Cheung and had no financial relationship with him or his exchange, according to reports.
The magazine also interviewed Cheung's mother-in-law, who is said to be a founder of Far East Exchange, one of the four exchanges that merged to become the Hong Kong stock exchange.
"I'm extremely disappointed that the magazine has sent a reporter to the home of my mother-in-law, who is elderly and sick. I hope the magazine will stop disturbing my family," Cheung said, questioning whether the magazine had gone beyond what is acceptable in a civil society.
Meanwhile, lawmakers questioned the government in a legislative meeting yesterday on why it did not take action against the HKMEx earlier as the Securities and Futures Commission was informed of its financial crisis about a year ago.
Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury Chan Ka-keung simply said: "I should not comment on the case as investigations by the police and the commission are still underway."