A WOMAN who was sent to a psychiatric centre for a $3 million fraud had her two-year hospital order halved on appeal. The Court of Appeal ruled that the sentencing judge was mistaken in equating the length of Lam Yuet-sin's prison term with that of a hospital order. But the court, comprising Vice-President Mr Justice Silke, Mr Justice Mayo and Mr Justice Sears, confirmed that such an order was not just remedial but also punitive. Lam, 34, had pleaded guilty before District Court Judge Burrell to two counts of procuring the execution of a valuable security. The offences occurred in 1987 and involved bills of exchange to the value of $3 million obtained by Lam with a faked document purporting to support sales and purchase of goods in her import and export company. She went to Britain after committing the offences and was not extradited to Hong Kong until last year. Before she was sentenced, she was examined by two psychiatrists and was diagnosed as suffering from a delusion of a persecutory type. Ordering her to be detained in Siu Lam Psychiatric Centre for two years, Judge Burrell said he would have imposed a two-year jail term if Lam had not been suffering from a mental illness. Mr Justice Sears said that in Lam's case evidence showed that one year of inpatient treatment was necessary.