The Queen v Chan Koon Kwok Arthur

Judgment Date29 March 1990
CourtCourt of Appeal (Hong Kong)
Judgement NumberCACC438/1989
Subject MatterCriminal Appeal







Chan Koon Kwok, Arthur



Coram: Hon Silke, V-P, Kempster and Power, JJA

Dates of Hearing: 28 - 29 March 1990

Date of Judgment: 29 March 1990




Kempster, JA (giving the judgment of the court) :

1. This is an application by Arthur Chan Koon Kwok for leave to appeal against his conviction in the District Court on 27 July 1989 on four charges of soliciting and nine of accepting an advantage as an agent contrary to s 9(1) (a) and (b) respectively of the Prevention of Bribery Ordinance (Cap 201).

2. Before turning to the merits of the application it may be helpful to outline the background to the charges. By two written agreements respectively dated 16 January and 1 February 1984 and made between a Californian corporation, Styl-land Incorporated, and SWA (HK) Ltd, incorporated in this territory, SWA agreed to act as exclusive buying agents for Styl-land in consideration of a commission of 9 1/2 per cent on the FOB value of merchandise shipped to Styl-land's order. Pursuant to that agreement SWA, which almost immediately changed its name to Innova Ltd, located suppliers of woven and knitted shirts and, on Styl-land's behalf, negotiated prices and arranged for manufacture, for export and for payment. At all material times until his resignation on 18 June 1987 the applicant was employed by Innova to discharge its responsibilities under the agreements save and except that he was not empowered personally to place orders. This fell to his superiors in Innova. On the materials put before him HH Judge Yeung found that the applicant had abused his position of trust by demanding and accepting personal "commissions" from those suppliers without the knowledge or consent of his employers.

3. Much of the evidence derived from witnesses who, by virtue of s 22 of the Ordinance, were not to be regarded as accomplices and had been granted immunity from prosecution conditional upon full and true testimony being given in court. On behalf of the applicant Mr Eddis mounted a sustained argument to the effect that no real attempt had been made to evaluate their credibility. He relied upon the judge's findings, in his careful and thorough Reasons for Verdict, that in relation to one such witness "there was no motive whatsoever for him to lie about the defendant at all"; to another "there could be no motive for him to lie", and to a third "again there was no conceivable motive for Wu Pak-kei to lie against the defendant ".

4. It had been suggested to two witnesses by ICAC investigators that they were themselves guilty of offences under the Ordinance. On this basis it is suggested that all the key witnesses...

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