Property agents admit using false documents to deceive agency

2021-9-8


Two property agents, charged by the ICAC, today (September 8) admitted at the West Kowloon Magistrates’ Courts that they had used seven false tenancy agreements to mislead a property agency.

Tam Chun-sing, 45, branch manager of Midland Realty International Limited (Midland Realty), pleaded guilty to three counts of agent using document with intent to deceive his principal, contrary to Section 9(3) of the POBO. The prosecution offered no evidence to four other similar charges against him.

Huang Xuemei, 51, property agent of Midland Realty, pleaded guilty to one count of agent using document with intent to deceive his principal.

Acting Chief Magistrate Mr Peter Law Tak-chuen adjourned the case to September 29 for sentence, pending background and community service order reports. Tam and Huang were granted cash bail.

The ICAC investigation arose from a corruption complaint. Subsequent enquiries revealed the above offences which took place between September 1, 2016 and June 29, 2018.

The court heard that at the material time, Tam was the branch manager of Cheung Fat branch while Lam Chi-hang was his downline agent. Huang and Lee Sung-fai were property agents of Midland Realty posted to its Villa Esplanada branch.

Around the aforesaid period, Tam, Huang, Lam and Lee cooperated with other property agents of Midland Realty to procure a leasing and five sale and purchase transactions. According to Midland Realty’s policy, they were required to share the relevant commissions with those property agents.

In three of the transactions, Tam did not report to Midland Realty that the clients agreed to pay additional commissions totalling over $192,000 to the agency. To avoid sharing the additional commissions with the cooperating property agents, Tam used three bogus provisional tenancy agreements to mislead Midland Realty that Tam and his wife, who was also his subordinate, had procured three tenancy agreements in relation to two properties in Ma Wan and a property in Tsing Yi. Tam gave those additional commissions to Midland Realty as the clients’ commissions in relation to those bogus transactions.

As a result, Midland Realty was misled to pay totalling over $15,000 more to Tam and his wife as sales commissions and overriding commissions.

The court also heard that the commission of $50,000 in relation to a sale and purchase transaction should have been shared among Huang and three other cooperating property agents of Midland Realty.

But Huang misled the agency by using a bogus provisional tenancy agreement that she had procured a tenancy transaction in relation to another property in Tsing Yi, and that the commission was only allocated to Huang and one of the aforesaid cooperating property agents. Huang therefore received about $600 more from Midland Realty as sales commission.

Co-defendants Lam, 39, and Lee, 56, earlier pleaded guilty to four charges – three of conspiracy for agent to use document with intent to deceive his principal and one of agent using document with intent to deceive his principal. Lam and Lee were ordered to perform 160 hours and 120 hours of community service respectively.

Midland Realty had rendered full assistance to the ICAC during its investigation into the case.

The prosecution was today represented by ICAC officer Simon Ip.
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