A liquidity crisis is also deepening at the company while its shares remain frozen A cross-border probe into piped gas supplier Wah Sang Gas Holdings has sparked mass personnel changes at the company, which has begun defaulting on its debt payments. The Tianjin-based company said yesterday its chairman and chief executive Shum Ka-sang and chief operations officer Shen Yi had surrendered their positions as they were 'assisting' investigators and their 'freedom of movement may be subject to constraint'. Two senior accounting staff members were also 'assisting' the investigation, the firm said. Another executive director, Qian Minglin, resigned for personal reasons. Wah Sang said Mr Shum was last seen on April 29, when the Tianjin Public Security Bureau arranged a meeting with the company's three directors in a commercial building. Mr Shum was accompanied by unidentified individuals. Although details of the probe remain elusive, the bureau seized corporate documents and accounting records relating to the company's subsidiaries three times last month. The State Administration of Foreign Exchange has informed Wah Sang of its intention to fine the company 28.74 million yuan for breaching foreign-exchange rules. It accuses the company's core subsidiary, Wah Sang Gas (China), of using non-existent profits to mask fraudulent foreign-exchange transactions. The company is also the subject of a probe by Hong Kong's Securities and Futures Commission, which suspended trading in Wah Sang's shares on April 6. The securities watchdog has expressed concern about suspicious fund flows at the company's mainland subsidiaries, saying the firm's published accounts might be false and misleading. Wah Sang said yesterday that its shares would remain frozen until further notice. Meanwhile, the company has been struggling to cope with a liquidity crisis. Wah Sang failed to repay a $55 million instalment owed to a syndicate led by Citic Ka Wah Bank. The payment was due on May 10. The company has subsequently paid $10.12 million. It has also defaulted on a $25 million payment due to China Merchants Bank. As yet, the creditor banks have not announced any legal action against Wah Sang.