Couple admit $330,000 salary fraud over public housing cleaning
A couple, charged by the ICAC, admitted at the Kwun Tong Magistracy today (April 23) that they had defrauded a cleaning service contractor of a public housing estate of salary payments totalling about $330,000 by falsifying the husband’s attendance records for almost four years.
Yuen Wing-cheung, 72, taxi driver, and his wife Ho Wai-yi, 63, former cleaning worker of Law’s Cleaning Services Limited (Law’s Cleaning), pleaded guilty to a joint charge of conspiracy to defraud, contrary to Common Law.
Magistrate Mr Joseph To Ho-shing adjourned the case to August 13 for mention. Yuen and Ho were granted bail.
The case arose from a corruption complaint. Subsequent ICAC enquiries revealed the above offence.
The court heard that Sau Mau Ping Estate is a public housing estate in Kwun Tong under the Housing Department (HD). At the material time, a property management company engaged by the HD for the estate awarded a cleaning service contract to Law’s Cleaning.
Yuen’s wife, Ho, was a cleaning worker of Law’s Cleaning posted to Sau Mau Ping Estate, working under the supervision of two cleaning foremen.
Yuen was a taxi driver. But according to the records of Law’s Cleaning, he was also employed by the company as a cleaning worker between November 2012 and September 2016.
The court heard that upon the instruction of the two cleaning foremen, Yuen registered his attendance at a face-recognition system twice a day, six days per week for reporting on and off duty.
During Yuen’s employment with Law’s Cleaning, he received a monthly wage of $6,000 on average, totalling about $330,000. He passed around $4,000 in cash to the two foremen through Ho each month and kept the remaining sums.
The court heard that Yuen was requested by one of the foremen to help register attendance in Sau Mau Ping Estate. In fact, he had never performed any cleaning work for Law’s Cleaning in the estate.
The HD and Law’s Cleaning had rendered full assistance to the ICAC during its investigation into the case.
The prosecution was today represented by ICAC officer Wan Wai.