Hong Kong Adds to Charges Against Two in HKMEx Probe

Hong Kong prosecutors told a court that two men arrested as part of an investigation into the failed Hong Kong Mercantile Exchange had more false documents than they were first charged with possessing.

They include papers relating to an account holding $10.6 billion, according to an amended charge sheet. Kowloon City Magistrate Ko Wai-hung set Aug. 5 to hear the prosecution’s request for the case to be transfered to the District Court.

Three men were charged May 24 with having false documents including letters related to a $460 million check and $11 million of funds after being arrested by police as part of an investigation. Hong Kong Mercantile Exchange surrendered its trading license earlier that month after failing to attract sufficient revenue to support its operations.

The Securities and Futures Commission said on May 21 it found “serious” suspected irregularities in the exchange’s financial affairs and referred the case to the police. A fourth man has been charged separately with possessing a fake statement of funds for $516 million and three other people have been arrested in the probe, according to a police spokesman.

Barry Cheung, chairman and largest shareholder of HKMEx, as it is known, resigned from all public service positions he held including the city’s executive council because he’s under police investigation.

Directors Resign

Cheung, who ran the 2012 election campaign of Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying, said he would cooperate with the investigation and could not comment further.

HKMEx co-president William Barkshire resigned as a director of the company on June 6, according to a filing to Hong Kong’s Companies Registry.

Hong Kong Cyberport Management Co. sued the commodities bourse company in June for unpaid rent. Aubrey Ho, a spokeswoman for HKMEx said the company was still operating out of the offices and that there were no further updates.

The case is Hong Kong Commercial Crime Bureau v. Dai Linyi, Lian Chunren and Li Shanrong, KCCC1951/2013 in the Kowloon City Magistrates’ Court.

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