A district court sentenced three people, including a former policeman and his wife, to jail terms of up to more than six years after they were found guilty of fraud, money laundering and conspiracy to launder money, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
The former police officer was jailed for two years while his wife got a prison term of six years and three months.
The third defendant, a saleswoman who was involved in money laundering, was sentenced to three years and nine months in prison.
The court heard earlier that between 2011 and 2013, the wife, surnamed Chu, persuaded her victims to invest money for the purchase of luxury watches, handbags and smartphones which she said she would resell for a profit.
However, instead of making the claimed investments, Chu used the money from new investors to pay the purported returns of the investments of earlier victims in what amounts to a Ponzi scheme, media reports said.
The victims had given Chu more than HK$15 million to invest in the scheme.
In her ruling, Deputy Judge Amy Chan Wai-mun said the wife was the mastermind behind the scam that took advantage of the victims’ trust.
The judge also blamed the husband, saying that he had been a member of the police force for 22 years but had chosen to turn a blind eye to his wife’s illegal activities.
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