Former Hong Kong lawmaker sues columnist for mocking ‘sure win’ World Cup betting formula

Chim Pui-chung claims that he has a track record of gambling success but is not encouraging gambling

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 11 January, 2017, 7:03am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 11 January, 2017, 7:02am

Former lawmaker Chim Pui-chung is insisting that his World Cup betting formula is foolproof as he sued for defamation, a newspaper columnist who questioned his calculations and sharing of “tips” with television viewers.

Chim, 71, told the High Court on Tuesday that he had a track record of gambling success and that his formula was a “sure win” betting strategy.

He sued Leung Pak-kin and Apple Daily – the Chinese language newspaper that ran Leung’s column – over an article published during the 2014 World Cup.

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The columnist described Chim as a “fool” after the former legislator had claimed on a TV talk show aired on the now-defunct station Asia Television that punters could win if they bet on draws.

On the first day of the trial, Chim, now an investment adviser, claimed that football gamblers would eventually cover their losses with the next bet’s winnings if they doubled their stakes after any failed bet.

“It’s a fact ... The formula definitely works,” the veteran businessman told the court.

“The question is how much money and time you have [in order to consistently follow this pattern],” he added. “Don’t gamble if you have no money.”

When barrister Jeffrey Li, who represented the columnist, questioned whether there was a sure win formula in the real world, Chim challenged the lawyer to name a single World Cup game that had seen no draws.

“According to past records, there were definitely draws [in every World Cup game],” Chim said.

But he stressed that he was not encouraging people to gamble on football.

The businessman accused Leung of writing the article in question with malice and of damaging his reputation.

Leung countered that Chim’s formula was unfeasible.

“If the draw comes at a much later stage, the principal involved would be much bigger,” he told the court.

The columnist agreed that calling Chim a “fool” would embarrass him.

“[But such a recognition] hadn’t crossed my mind when I wrote about [Chim’s] formula,” Leung claimed.

Outside court, Chim declined to specify how much he was seeking in compensation.

The trial continues before Deputy High Court Judge Anson Wong Man-kit.