Hong Kong tycoon Raymond Kwok applauded the resignation of then-chief executive Tung Chee-hwa in 2005, according to the prosecution in the corruption trial of former chief secretary Rafael Hui.
In a diary entry, Kwok, co-chairman of Sun Hung Kai Properties Ltd. (00016.HK), wrote “Tung resigning good and lot of energy”, prosecutor David Perry QC told the High Court.
Kwok wrote that he had called Hui to talk about the positions of chief executive and chief secretary after the story broke in the media, Perry said.
Raymond Kwok is a co-defendant in Hong Kong’s biggest corruption trial, along with elder brother Thomas.
In 2001, when Hui was head of the Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Authority (MPFA), he allegedly approached the Kwok brothers to lobby for a private consulting agreement in return for free accommodation in a luxury rental apartment owned by the Kwoks, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported Tuesday, citing the prosecution.
Hui did not report the deal with the Kwoks when he voted in favor of the MPFA’s 2003 lease renewal on its offices with Sun Hung Kai, the High Court heard.
Hui moved into the luxury apartment in Happy Valley that year after spending HK$1.3 million (US$167,708) on decorations, the prosecution said.
In the end, the property was let for HK$1.37 million a year from 2004 to 2005, a discount to the market rent. It was not until Hui became Hong Kong chief secretary that the rent was raised to HK$160,000 a month, comparable with the going rate in the luxury rental market, Perry said.
However, the Kwoks have been paying the rent for Hui, the court was told.
Perry presented confidential memos from 2001 to 2003 in which Raymond, Thomas and their other brother Walter allegedly discussed Hui’s potential appointment as a private consultant.
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