Disciplinary Decisions

Cheng Tze Kui (“1st Respondent”) and Kwong Chi Ho (“2nd Respondent”), formerly, the partners of Messrs. T.K. Cheng & Co. (a closed firm) (the “Firm”)

  • Section 8(1) of the Legal Practitioners Ordinance
  • Rule 10(1) and 10(2), 10A and 11 of the Solicitors’ Accounts Rules
  • Rule 2(e) of the Solicitors’ Practice Rules

Hearing Date:
11 March and 2 July 2014

Findings and Order:
6 August 2014

Having considered the Affidavit filed by the Law Society and the exhibits thereto and given the admission of the 1st Respondent to the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th Complaints, the admission of the 2nd Respondent to the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th Complaints and the 1st and 2nd Respondents’ Agreed Facts, the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal (“Tribunal”) found the 1st Respondent guilty of the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th Complaints while the 2nd Respondent guilty of the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th Complaints.

The Complaints laid against the 1st and 2nd Respondents are as follows:

First Complaint
(against 1st Respondent)

Breach of Rule 2(e) of the Solicitors’ Practice Rules (“SPR”) in that the 1st Respondent had repeatedly failed to deliver the Accountant’s Reports of the Firm within the stipulated time to the Law Society in years 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2009 which compromised or impaired or was likely to compromise or impair a proper standard of work.

Second Complaint
(against 2nd Respondent)

Breach of Rule 2(e) of the SPR in that the 2nd Respondent had repeatedly failed to deliver the Accountant’s Reports of the Firm within the stipulated time to the Law Society in years 2007 and 2009 which compromised or impaired or was likely to compromise or impair a proper standard of work.

Third Complaint
(against 1st and 2nd Respondents)

Breach of Section 8(1) of the Legal Practitioners Ordinance in that the 1st and 2nd Respondents had failed to deliver the Firm’s 2009–2010 Accountant’s Report to the Law Society within the stipulated time in 2010.

Fourth Complaint
(against 1st and 2nd Respondents)

Breach of Rule 10(1) and 10(2) of the Solicitors’ Accounts Rules (“SAR”) in that the 1st and 2nd Respondents had failed to keep properly written up books and accounts of the Firm’s client accounts from September 2010 to May2011.

Fifth Complaint
(against 1st and 2nd Respondents)

Breach of Rule 10A of the SAR in that the 1st and 2nd Respondents had failed to prepare reconciliations of client accounts of all the bank accounts of the Firm from September 2010 to May 2011 save for one of the Firm’s banks for the months of August and September 2010 and for the Firm’s other bank for the month of August 2010.

Sixth Complaint
(against 1st and 2nd Respondents)

Breach of Rule 11 of the SAR in that the 1st and 2nd Respondents had from December 2010 to May 2011 failed to produce to the Monitoring Accountants appointed by the Council of the Law Society (the “Council”) the Firm’s books and accounts for their inspection when they visited the Firm at the direction of the Council on 11 January, 18 April and 3May 2011.

And upon hearing the mitigation submissions made on behalf of the 1st and 2nd Respondents, the Tribunal ordered, inter alia, that:

  1. In respect of the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th Complaints, the 1st Respondent be:
    1. censured; and
    2. fined with a sum of HK$30,000, together with a condition imposed on him whereby he may not practise as a sole practitioner or in any partnership for a period of 2 years from the date of the Order (6 August 2014);
  2. In respect of the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th Complaints, the 2nd Respondent be fined with a sum of HK$30,000; and
  3. Costs of these proceedings, including the costs of the Law Society, the Prosecutor and the Clerk to the Tribunal, to be paid by the 1st and 2nd Respondents and to be taxed on a party-and-party basis, if not agreed.

Mr. Lai Ting Hong of Messrs. Deacons, for the Law Society of Hong Kong

Mr. Herbert Leung, instructed by Messrs. Wong & Wong, for the 1st Respondent

Mr. Bosco Cheng, instructed by Messrs. Cheung & Liu, Solicitors for the 2nd Respondent at the 1st hearing on 11March2014

Mr. Charles Chen, instructed by Messrs. Cheung & Liu, Solicitors, for the 2nd Respondent at the 2nd hearing on 2July2014

Mr. Maurice W.M. Lee, Clerk to the Tribunal

Tribunal Members:

Mr. Chan Hiu Fung, Nicholas (Chairman) Ms. Fong Sut Sam, Rosetta

Mr. Lui Chi Ho, Eric