Rafael Hui did not declare HK$2.4 million of loans, trial told
Ex-MPF authority chief was not aware Rafael Hui borrowed money and received lodging from Sun Hung Kai Properties, trial told
Rafael Hui Si-yan did not declare to the Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Authority chairman two loans totalling HK$2.4 million he obtained from a Sun Hung Kai Properties subsidiary just before and after becoming authority managing director, a court heard yesterday.
Nor was the chairman at the time, Charles Lee Yeh-kwong, aware that Hui was negotiating a consultancy agreement with SHKP, the High Court heard.
Lee was testifying for the second day in the top-level corruption trial involving Hui, a former chief secretary, and SHKP co-chairmen Thomas Kwok Ping-kwong and Raymond Kwok Ping-luen.
Hui, 66, who faces eight charges related to bribery and misconduct in public office, served as the authority's managing director between June 2000 and August 2003.
Referring to documents, prosecutor Joseph Tse Wah-yuen SC said Hui obtained a loan of HK$900,000 and another of HK$1.5 million from Honour Finance Company, an SHKP subsidiary, in April 2000 and January 2002 respectively.
Lee said he was "not aware" Hui had obtained the loans by the time Hui voted on May 13, 2003, in support of renewing a tenancy agreement for offices at One IFC, developed by SHKP.
The court heard that under the renewed agreement, the authority would pay a monthly rent of about HK$1.4 million for its offices at One IFC for six years.
Tse referred to a declaration form Hui submitted in February 2002 in which he disclosed his 50 per cent shareholding in a private company.
"Do you remember whether you had seen any other declaration that was submitted by Mr Rafael Hui when he was the managing director of MPFA," Tse asked, to which Lee replied: "The answer is no."
Lee said he had no knowledge that Hui had from February 2003 lived with his wife at The Leighton Hill, a property developed and managed by SHKP, without paying rent.
Citing an MPFA code of conduct document, Tse said its employees should avoid situations where their personal interest actually or potentially conflicted with the authority's interest.
"Do you accept that avoiding conflict of interest … is fundamental to the operation of the body," Tse asked.
"I can confirm that," Lee said.
Barrister Edwin Choy Wai-bond, for Hui, referred to an MPFA document saying that an employee would have to report a loan to a senior officer only if he had borrowed from a source other than those permitted, such as licensed moneylenders and banks.
Lee agreed with Choy's suggestion that an employee would not need to report money he owed to a credit card company.
But the former authority chairman said an employee would have to make a declaration if he borrowed money from a bank with which he dealt in his official capacity at the authority.
Thomas Kwok, 62, faces one charge of conspiracy to offer an advantage to Hui and two counts of conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office.
Raymond Kwok, 61, faces four charges, including one with Hui of furnishing false information.
SHKP executive director Thomas Chan Kui-yuen, 67, and former Hong Kong stock exchange official Francis Kwan Hung-sang, 63, each face two charges. All have pleaded not guilty. The trial continues.