The acquittals cast doubt over the future of $77m in assets seized in the inquiry Four men painted as the key figures in Hong Kong's biggest money-laundering operation, alleged to have processed more than $92 million a day, walked free last night after a High Court jury acquitted them. The two remaining men on the indictment - who also faced a count of conspiracy to deal with property knowing or believing it to represent the proceeds of an indictable offence - face a retrial after the jury failed to reach a decision after three full days of deliberation. Last night's decision throws in doubt the future of the millions in assets seized following the investigation. Authorities had reported seizing $77 million worth of bank accounts and property. Further and separate court hearings on the confiscation orders will be held at a later date. Acquitted of the money-laundering charge were: Lam Yiu-chung, 48, former senior manager of Po Sang Bank; Judas Yip Heong-wing, 54, director and major shareholder of Guardecade; Wong Sung-kai, 38, who also held Guardecade shares; and courier Chiu Kam-lung, also known as Yau Kuk-hoi, 27. Chan Chung-ming, 43 and Wong Sung-tak, 31, will face a retrial on the count. Lam was found guilty of one count of accepting an advantage in relation to US$10,000 but acquitted on another count. He will be sentenced tomorrow before Deputy High Court Judge Peter Longley in the Court of First Instance. Prosecutor Peter Callaghan had opened the trial saying the jury would be 'astounded' by the billions of dollars involved. He told the Court of First Instance the trial was the largest money-laundering case ever prosecuted in Hong Kong, and 'possibly the largest money-laundering case ever prosecuted anywhere'. The jury heard that the five-year operation which ran from August 2, 1996, until September 11, 2001 was so enormous, a 35-day snapshot had to be presented for them to digest the logistics of the scheme, which laundered an average of $92,150,137 each day. The 'snapshot' showed $1.9 billion converted from US dollars, $409.3 million converted from Italian lira, $209.6 million converted from German marks and US$192.4 million from yuan. The trial heard the figures involved may have reached as much as $20 billion to $30 billion per year. The jury heard the money was supposedly from three mainland syndicates and was transported from the mainland by couriers. The two vehicles presented as key elements in the scheme were a money-changing firm, Guardecade Company in Nathan Road, and the branch of Po Sang Bank in Kimberley Road, Tsim Sha Tsui. Guardecade allegedly processed the money through 1,300 local and overseas accounts.