TWO former associate professors of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University have denied cheating the institute out of more than $600,000 over five years.
The institute terminated its contracts with David Picken, 45, and David Shoesmith, 47, in May after they were charged by the Independent Commission Against Corruption.
South Kowloon Court was told the two academics from the university's Building and Real Estate department had done consultancy work for Australian firm Construction Software Services in 1987.
It is alleged they failed to report the consultancy fees they quoted for the job to the university.
The Dean of the Faculty of Construction and Land Use, Professor Michael Anson, told the court the university encouraged staff to accept consultancy work to keep up with the industry. Under the procedures, fees are shared by staff and the institute.
Prosecutor Gramsci Di Fazio said the men received money directly through a construction and computer company operated by their wives between February 1987 and May 1992.
The pair, represented by Robin Walters, denied one count of conspiracy to defraud involving $619,348.
The hearing before magistrate Queeny Au-Yeung continues.