Rafael Hui

Rafael Hui trial: middleman Francis Kwan set for early release from prison next week

The former Hong Kong stock exchange official had been convicted of handling more than HK$11.18 million in bribes to the city’s former chief secretary

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 10 April, 2018, 5:30pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 10 April, 2018, 10:50pm

A former Hong Kong stock exchange official will walk out of Stanley Prison a free man next week, 20 months before he was expected to be released for his conviction in a corruption scandal that took down the city’s former No 2 official.

A source told the Post on Tuesday that Francis Kwan Hung-sang would be released from the maximum security institution next week after his sentence was reduced by a third for good behaviour.

“Also after deducting public holidays from the term, Kwan is expected to go home next week,” the source said.

Kwan had wept in court when he was sentenced to five years prison in December 2014 for handling HK$11.18 million (US$1.5 million) in bribes to Rafael Hui Si-yan, a former chief secretary.

Hui, along with Thomas Kwok Ping-kwong, former joint chairman of Sun Hung Kai Properties and SHKP executive director, Thomas Chan Kui-yuen, were also convicted in the case and are still serving their sentences.

Guilty of graft, former No 2 official Rafael Hui and property tycoon Thomas Kwok stripped of Hong Kong civic honours

The case came to light in 2008 when the Independent Commission Against Corruption received an anonymous letter accusing Kwok and his brother Raymond Kwok Ping-luen of providing Hui with rent-free accommodation at Leighton Hill.

After a 133-day trial involving more than 120 witnesses in 2014, Hui was found guilty of conspiring to commit misconduct in public office after receiving nearly HK$20 million in bribes, including taking HK$8.5 million from Thomas Kwok through two middlemen before he took office in 2005. Prosecutors said this made him “favourably disposed” to Thomas Kwok and SHKP.

How a small team of graft-busters tightened the net on Rafael Hui

Hui was jailed for 7 ½ years while Thomas Kwok was locked up for five years, but Raymond Kwok was acquitted.

Chan, another middleman who was sentenced to six years in jail, was expected to be the next in the group to walk free. He could be out of jail by the end of this year on good behaviour.