Articles: Champerty & maintenance

Hong Kong's not-so-free economy
The US-based Heritage Foundation has, as always, ranked HK as the freest economy in the World. For once, the Government doesn't accuse foreign forces of interfering in HK's internal affairs. But this rosy view is not held by those who take the time to study the domestic economy. Here are a few things that Heritage may have overlooked. (4-Feb-2018)
Chi Dong Eun v L & A (8195) and others
HK Court of First Instance, 23-May-2017
The winding-up petition is struck out, as Mr Chi was not a registered shareholder for 6 of the 18 months before filing, as required by law. In a Feb-2017 hearing, Chi produced a share certificate in the name of Liu Longcheng, a plaintiff in another case against L&A. Judge Anthony Chan refers his judgment to the Director of Public Prosecution, as the evidence "invites the investigation…as to whether any of the common law offences of maintenance and champerty has been committed." We note that most investors in HK are not on the share register due to the central depository system, making the law on winding-up unavailable to them.
Re bankrupt Ian Chu Chi Ho
HK Court of First Instance, 21-Jan-2016
Application by money-lenders in what we call the "Chung Nam Network" for the removal of the bankruptcy trustees is dismissed. The trustees have entered into a funding agreement and are looking into "a number of apparently suspicious transactions arising from the relationship of the Bankrupt" with the lenders. Most of the money purportedly borrowed by Ian Chu Chi Ho was paid by the lenders directly HEC Finance 92 Ltd, another company in the network. That was formerly Chung Nam Finance Ltd.
Ocean Grand liquidators get court approval for litigation financing
HK Court of First Instance, 8-Oct-2015
The companies are not named, but from the case numbers we know that they are former subsidiaries of Ocean Grand Holdings Ltd, which collapsed in 2006. The parent company went through a scheme of arrangement and emerged as Zhidao (1220). The liquidators, presumably still Deloitte, can now sue unnamed persons to try to recover money for the bondholders, who as of 2008 were owed about HK$1.2bn.
Angela Ho & Associates v Phyllis Kwong Ka Yin
HK Court of First Instance, 2-Dec-2014
Paragraph 42 and 48: "Since there is evidence before the court to show that Ms Kwong's firm has made contingency fee agreements with the ultimate clients, I consider it my duty to report the matter to the Law Society..."
Consultant and solicitor jailed for champerty after review of sentences
ICAC, 25-Nov-2014
Re bankrupt Ian Chu Chi Ho: application by money lenders to see trustees' funding agreement is dismissed
HK Court of First Instance, 18-Nov-2014
"The majority of the funds borrowed by the Bankrupt were paid by Forefront, Sun Willie and Dragonite directly to HEC Finance without ever being paid to the Bankrupt...Further investigations by the Trustees indicate that the Bankrupt continues to be employed by Seekers Financial" - affirmation of trustee Kenny Wong Kwok Keung.
Government position on champerty and maintenance
HK Government, 25-Mar-2014
HKSAR v Louie Mui Kwok Keung
HK Court of Appeal, 21-Mar-2014
HKSAR v Louie Mui Kwok Keung
HK Court of Appeal, 18-Nov-2013
Shamed barrister jailed after taking cuts from clients
HK Standard, 27-Mar-2013
The law against champerty was abolished in England in 1967.
History made as barrister Louie Mui is jailed for illegal deals with clients
South China Morning Post, 27-Mar-2013
HKSAR v Louie Mui Kwok Keung: reasons for sentence
HK District Court, 26-Mar-2013
Trio face court for alleged champerty over HK$7m civil claims
ICAC, 4-Mar-2013
Once again, the medieval law against contingent legal fees (a piece of the action) swings into action. Solicitors and their clients should be free to negotiate any basis of payment that they choose. The same law was abolished in England in 1967.
Winnie Lo Wai Yan v HKSAR
HK Court of Final Appeal, 23-Feb-2012
The solicitor succeeds in her appeal and has her conviction for breach of the law on champerty and maintenance quashed. Bokhary says "nothing which I have said is meant to discourage consideration of legislative reform of the law as to maintenance, champerty or matters relating thereto." Ribeiro says: "I wish to raise for consideration the question whether and to what extent criminal liability for maintenance should be retained in Hong Kong... In England and Wales, criminal and tortious liability for both maintenance and champerty were abolished by the Criminal Law Act 1967..."
Winnie Lo Wai Yan v HKSAR
HK Court of Final Appeal, 3-May-2011
The solicitor in the landmark maintenance case is granted leave to appeal by the Court of Final Appeal.
Winnie Lo Wai Yan v HKSAR
HK Court of Final Appeal, 7-Apr-2011
The solicitor jailed for "consipracy to commit maintenance" is granted bail pending her final appeal.
HKSAR v Winnie Lo Wai Yan
HK Court of Appeal, 16-Feb-2011
The solicitor convicted of "conspiracy to commit maintenance" in a no-win-no-fee arrangement is granted permission to appeal to the Court of Final Appeal on the question of whether the offence is constitutional.
HKSAR v Winnie Lo Wai Yan (in Chinese)
HK Court of Appeal, 3-Dec-2010
'No win, no fee' claim agent and solicitor jailed
HK Standard, 10-Jul-2009
HKSAR v Winnie Lo Wai Yan (in Chinese)
HK District Court, 9-Jul-2009
'No win, no fee' pair convicted
HK Standard, 26-Jun-2009
Lawyer and agent deny striking deal over crash payout
HK Standard, 12-May-2009
Taxpayer should foot bill in `no win-no fee' scheme
HK Standard, 14-Aug-2008
'No win, no fee' lawyer in dock
HK Standard, 9-Jul-2008
Beware of touting activities of recovery agents
HK Government, 8-Jul-2008
Siegfried Adalbert Unruh v Hans-Joerg Seeberger and Company
HK Court of Final Appeal, 9-Feb-2007

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