The Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) said on Monday that it has brought legal charges against four people who were suspected of leaking questions on Hong Kong’s secondary school leaving test.
According to the anti-graft agency, the four are believed to have used smartphones to send and receive confidential information and questions of the 2016 and 2017 Chinese language examinations of the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE).
One of the four defendants is Weslie Siao Chi-yung, 42, a celebrity Chinese language tutor from tutorial school Modern Education (Hong Kong) Ltd., the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
Siao is famous for “predicting” questions in Chinese language public exams, which also made him a controversial person.
The other three persons charged by ICAC were Siao’s wife, Tsai Ying-ying, 33, who is a former invigilator of the Hong Kong Examinations and Assessment Authority (HKEAA) and a tutor of Modern Education; and two former oral examiners of HKEAA, Cheung Kwok-kuen, 43, and Ng Wang-leung, 43.
According to the agency, it received a corruption complaint referral from the HKEAA before launching an investigation.
During the process, investigators found evidence that showed Cheung and Tsai had used their smartphones to send confidential questions of the 2016 and 2017 Chinese language examinations of HKDSE to Siao.
Ng, meanwhile, was alleged to have used his smartphone to send Siao confidential information about a briefing session on the 2017 Chinese language examination of HKDSE.
Siao had allegedly received such confidential information and questions on his smartphone.
As per the findings, Siao and Cheung face a joint charge of conspiracy to obtain access to a computer with dishonest intent, violating Section 159A and Section 161(1)(c) of the Crimes Ordinance, while Siao and Ng jointly face a similar charge.
Siao and Tsai also face a joint charge of obtaining access to a computer with dishonest intent, marking a breach of Section 161(1)(c) of the Crimes Ordinance.
All of the defendants have been released on bail, pending their appearance in a West Kowloon Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.
In response to media inquiries, a spokesperson for Modern Education said it was unable to comment on the case as legal proceedings are underway, but stressed that it will not tolerate any illegal acts.
A spokesperson for the HKEAA also said she did not want to comment on this particular case, given the ongoing legal process.
But she offered some broad remarks, saying that, based on the suggestion of ICAC, the HKEAA has required principals of secondary schools to make sure the nominated invigilators for this year’s HKDSE exams do not have any connection with personnel of tutorial schools.
Under the Hong Kong Examinations and Assessment Authority Ordinance, if any person who has been appointed or employed contravenes the secrecy provisions, he or she is liable on conviction to a fine as well as imprisonment for six months.
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