THE organiser of a game of pai kau at a Sha Tin restaurant had his conviction quashed by the High Court yesterday. Mr Justice Woo ruled that the gathering was a social occasion. Leung Hing, 33, was convicted of operating an unlawful gambling establishment, fined $10,000 and ordered to pay court costs of $5,000 at Sha Tin Court. Mr Justice Woo quashed the conviction yesterday. He said that many of the findings of the magistrate were contradictory or inconsistent. ''If he is right, then the hosts of almost all banquets thrown by Chinese people in Hongkong, in accordance with their custom, for weddings and birthdays, at restaurants, would be committing the offence of operating an illegal gambling establishment,'' the judge said. Mr Leung was arrested when police entered the Atlantic General Seafood Restaurant in Ma On Shan last October Officers found 25 people inside a VIP room. Mr Leung and 14 friends were sitting around a large table with a set of tin kau tiles, dice and money on the table. A game of pai kau was being played. Mr Leung had booked the room and brought the tin kau tiles. The group gathered about once a month, the court heard. The judge questioned how the magistrate could have concluded the gathering was not a social occasion after accepting that all the people in the room were friends, that they met regularly to dine and drink and that the sign outside the room described a banquet. He also found that there were blatant and serious inconsistencies in police evidence which the magistrate did not attempt to resolve. The judge ruled there was no private gain made and the pai kau game was legal.