Magistrate praises ex-boss of balm firm The former head of the Chinese analgesic balm maker Pak Fah Yeow International has been ordered to perform 180 hours of community service for molesting two taxi drivers late at night. Stephen Gan Fock-wai, 46, breathed a sigh of relief and bowed repeatedly to thank the magistrate after hearing the sentence in Eastern Court yesterday. Magistrate Winston Leung Wing-chung described the businessman and singer as 'generally a good person' who committed the crimes because he had been drinking, which had impaired his self-control and judgment over his long-suppressed bisexual urges. The magistrate said he accepted Gan's remorse and took into account his past contributions to the needy. He said he admired the effort by the man known as the 'Prince of White Flower Oil' to put a positive spin on a negative situation, expressed in a handwritten letter to the court voicing his determination to correct himself and start anew. Gan, who quit as chief executive of the company after being convicted of the offences last month, vowed to quit drinking and going to bars and said he would devote his money and time to the community and the family business. As for his love life, he wrote 'from now on I will follow, rather than to force, my faith and destiny'. The magistrate said he believed the prosecution had done Gan more good than bad as, having acknowledged his bisexuality in the witness box, he could now seek professional help to handle the stress from his suppressed sexual orientation. Gan had denied groping the two taxi drivers, aged 37 and 34, after hiring their cabs in Causeway Bay in 2003 and last year. He offered one of them HK$500 before groping him and offered the other HK$2,000 to have sex with him. After the verdict, the brawny businessman and Buddhist rushed through a mob of journalists and did not take questions outside court, saying only, 'Thanks for your care', with folded hands as his driver drove him away. Gan must continue psychological and psychiatric treatment as part of his community service order. He apologised again to the taxi drivers and their families through his barrister, Lawrence Lok Ying-kam SC. Mr Lok told the court Gan had kept his sexual orientation to himself because he feared the truth would hurt his mother. The barrister submitted six letters from people, including Gan's mother, his personal assistant and an elderly employee, who all spoke of his love, kindness and generosity. Reggie Ho, of Horizons, a gay and lesbian group, said: 'It is a high- profile case. I fear that society, instead of trying to understand more about gay and lesbian people, will think it is common that we are very casual about sex.' Kwok Chi-piu, chairman of the Urban Taxi Drivers Association Joint Committee, said the sentence might seem lenient on the surface but Gan had already suffered severely. 'We feel angrier that police fail to take action against people beating taxi drivers. Some attack us simply because we do not offer discounts,' Mr Kwok said.