A Chinese medicine practitioner, whom a magistrate referred to as "an evil member of the herd", was jailed yesterday for eight months for issuing 652 fake medical certificates that helped employees of the government and Jockey Club exploit their sick-leave schemes. Magistrate Wong Wai-kuen said the certificates produced by Chan Tung, 60, for 14 members of staff resulted in total losses of HK$92,000 to the Health Department and Jockey Club. Wong said not only had Chan "ruined the reputation of the industry", the disgraced practitioner also made other employers lose faith in similar documents produced by other practitioners. He branded Chan "an evil member of the herd". Chan earlier pleaded guilty to 14 counts of conspiracy to use false instruments. During that hearing, Fanling Court heard that Chan was practising at Tung Yan Chinese Medicine Company in Tai Po when he issued the bogus papers. The "patients" would phone or text him in advance and he would pass them the documents at Tai Po Market MTR station or Kwong Fuk Estate, a public housing estate in the area. Yesterday, Wong said Chan - who made about HK$19,700 out of the dodgy deals - could not have committed the offences out of a momentary impulse, as they were spread out over a long period of time. But he took note of Chan's hard work since starting to learn the trade in the 1970s before he was registered in 2002. According to the Independent Commission Against Corruption, three of the 14 charged with using the certificates were health surveillance assistants at the department. The others were telebet service assistants at the Jockey Club.