Three plead not guilty to manslaughter in case of Hong Kong beauty clinic death

Two doctors, a technician accused of gross negligence following death of woman who underwent experimental cancer therapy

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 18 May, 2017, 5:01pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 18 May, 2017, 9:51pm

Two doctors and a technician in Hong Kong involved in the case of a woman who died after an experimental cancer treatment at a beauty clinic maintained their innocence in court on Thursday.

Dr Stephen Chow Heung-wing, Dr Mak Wan-ling, and Chan Kwun-chung each pleaded not guilty to one count of manslaughter on Thursday.

The three are accused of unlawfully killing 46-year-old Chan Yuen-lam in a beauty clinic on October 10, 2012, due to gross negligence when they breached their duty of care during that treatment, the substantial cause of Chan’s death.

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Prosecutors claimed that before she died, Chan underwent CIK/AI therapy, an experimental cancer treatment in which blood is extracted, manipulated and reintroduced into the patient.

According to the charges, Chow is the owner of the DR Group beauty clinic at the centre of the case, marketing, preparing and administering the treatment for the woman.

Technician Chan Kwun-chung of Asia Pacific Stem Cell Science was responsible for preparing the procedure, while Mak was tasked with administering the therapy, the charges said.

Both Chow and Mak failed to ensure Chan Kwun-chung was qualified to prepare and produce a blood product used in the procedure, prosecutors claimed. The charges said that Chan was not qualified to do so himself.

The three defendants were also accused of failing to make sure the blood product used in the procedure had undergone viral and bacterial testing, and of not keeping any records.

The two doctors were further accused of failing their duty to inform the woman of the risk, while Mak and Chan allegedly failed to enforce a properly documented protocol in handling the blood product.

The case will continue before Mrs Justice Judianna Barnes on Friday.