Prison for having fake draft

A TOURIST who claimed that she found a fake bank draft for US$61.9 million (HK$478.86 million) and two counterfeit travellers' cheques in an air-conditioning duct has been jailed for 20 months by the District Court.

Evelyn Perez, a merchant from Manila, had claimed she found the cheques while looking for a rat in the duct but Judge Britton said the only rat he could smell was in the story she told the court.

Perez, 38, pleaded guilty to being in custody of counterfeit notes and two counts of possessing a false instrument.

This was the first case under this section of the Crimes Amendment Ordinance 1992.

In sentencing her, the judge said she had shown no remorse and her explanation was ''wholly preposterous and unbelievable''.

Crown Counsel Mr Kevin Zervos told the court that on October 7 last year, ICAC officers searched a Jordan Road guesthouse and found five counterfeit US$100 notes, the cheques and a counterfeit bank draft payable to Orient Star Mines.