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Chinese Estates Advances After Special Dividend: Hong Kong Mover

July 24 (Bloomberg) -- Chinese Estates Holdings Ltd., the developer controlled by Hong Kong billionaire Joseph Lau, gained the most in more than four years after saying it will pay a special dividend to shareholders.

The shares rose 9.1 percent, the most since June 2009, to HK$14.90 at 2:08 p.m. local time.

Chinese Estates will pay HK$1.30 per share in a special dividend in addition to a 20 Hong Kong cents per share interim dividend, after posting a 41 percent increase in first-half underlying profit, the company said in a statement to Hong Kong’s stock exchange today.

Lau is being sued by the Macau government for bribery and money-laundering after it last year invalidated the land concession for several sites in the city acquired by Chinese Estates. Lau, 61 according to the company’s annual report published in April, hasn’t shown up to the trial citing health reasons, according to reports by Radio Television Hong Kong.

Lau, his associates and family own about 75 percent of Chinese Estates, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. He has a net worth of about $5.3 billion, according to Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kelvin Wong in Hong Kong at kwong40@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andreea Papuc at apapuc1@bloomberg.net

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