Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Serve Me Abalone, Not Subpoenas

Is that a court order? Sorry, I’ve already eaten

Joseph Lau Luen-hung – Hong Kong’s 8th richest man (according to Forbes) with a net worth of $7 billion – is too busy a man to be bothered with mundane chores. Housecleaning? Sorry, have a staff for that. Dealing with Hong Kong traffic? Got a driver. Stand trial in a Macau court because he’s been accused of bribing an infamous former government official (Public Works Chief Ao Man-long) $2.5 million to be permitted to build a luxury residential complex? Pardon, got lunch plans with one of my girlfriends at my favorite restaurant, Fook Lam Moon. The abalone there is awfully good, after all.

This is the fourth time that Joseph Lau, a real estate developer who controls Chinese Estates, has failed to appear in court as ordered to contest the graft allegation. In the past, he has cited “chronic disease”. This time, he appeared to be in decent health and had his young daughter in tow as he emerged from the restaurant. He has asked that he be allowed to stand trial in absentia. Luckily for him, another girlfriend did sit in court as an observer and took notes for him while he was tucking into his favorite dishes.

“Chronic disease?” Which one I wonder. So many possibilities come to mind.

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