Two prominent city lawyers, a fugitive businessman and his ex-lover - all convicted in a high-profile witness-tampering case - are the victims of an overzealous prosecution, the Court of Appeal heard yesterday. 'Were [their] actions capable of producing a miscarriage of justice?' barrister Clare Montgomery asked. 'The answer is plainly not.' The group were accused in February 2006 of conspiring in July 2004 to prevent Becky Wong Pui-see - who was in a witness protection programme - from testifying in a bribery case against her former boss, Derek Wong Chong-kwong. Wong, 40, the former chairman of Semtech International Holdings, was convicted of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice in 2006 along with his girlfriend, Mandy Chui Man-si, 29. Wong was sentenced to three years' imprisonment and Chui to 21/2 years in jail. Chui received a concurrent one-year term for perjury. The case that shocked Hong Kong's legal community also saw solicitor Andrew Lam Ping-cheung, 56, sentenced to four years for conspiracy, while barrister Kevin Egan, 61, was convicted of trying to reveal Ms Wong's identity to a South China Morning Post reporter. Egan, the first person convicted of breaking the city's witness protection law, received a 21/2-year sentence. Separately, Wong - who fled the city and is now on the run - was sentenced to 39 months for bribing a banker and ex-broker to manipulate the company's share price. Yesterday Ms Montgomery, Lam's barrister, said her client simply fulfilled his duties as a solicitor. She was referring to a habeas corpus hearing called to determine if Ms Wong had agreed voluntarily to be a prosecution witness. The Independent Commission Against Corruption argued that the hearing amounted to intimidation designed to make the secretary change her mind about testifying against her boss in the bribery case. But that was stretching the definition of witness tampering to the 'margins of criminality', Ms Montgomery told Mr Justice Geoffrey Ma Tao-li, Mr Justice Robert Tang Ching and Mr Justice Alan Wright. 'You have to look at what the [possible] impact is in real terms.' Jonathan Caplan, Chui's barrister, mirrored those comments, saying cases of witness tampering tended to involve threats or promises. There was no evidence the former beauty parlour owner played a role in pushing for the hearing or tried to intimidate Ms Wong, the barrister said. Chui simply asked lawyers to check on her friend after she received frightened calls from the witness - who was calling from a bathroom stall, out of ICAC investigators' sight. Chui, Lam and Egan have been out on bail since 2006. The hearing continues today.