The chairman of the North District Council pleaded guilty yesterday to fraudulently claiming $129,027 for office rent. Li Kwok-fung, 53, also chairman of Fanling District Rural Committee, admitted instructing two assistants to prepare 29 bogus receipts between January 2000 and May 2002. The council's secretariat then reimbursed him $129,027. Fanling court heard Li issued and signed the receipts as committee chairman, and claimed he had rented an office for council work from the rural committee for $5,000 a month. In May 2002, Li told a committee clerk to make false entries in account books that he had paid off all he owed to the committee. This amounted to $145,000 in rent. The clerk said she followed the instruction and confirmed to the Independent Commission Against Corruption that she had never seen any agreement or rental payment from the defendant. Prosecutor Susanna Ku Pui-fong dropped a joint fraud charge against Li and co-defendant Tang Kun-nin, a former North District councillor. Tang, 51, still faces a charge of forging rental receipts issued by the rural committee totalling $39,000. He was reimbursed $30,000 by the council's secretariat. He entered no plea yesterday. Both defendants were released on bail. Tang's hearing continues today.