Five footballers charged with match-fixing

Top News | Sophie Hui 29 Jun 2017

Five former Hong Kong Pegasus FC players, including former star Lee Wai- lim and Pegasus captain Kwok Kin- pong, were yesterday charged by the Independent Commission Against Corruption with bribery and fraud linked to match-fixing.

Lee, 36, Kwok, 30, Michael Cheng Lai-hin, 31, Chan Pak-hang, 24, and Lee Ka-ho, 24, face seven charges for allegedly offering and accepting bribes of HK$60,000 and fraud by contriving to fix results of three Reserve Division matches organized by the Hong Kong Football Association last year.

The five also face a joint charge of conspiracy to defraud.

Kwok and Cheng are said to have conspired together and with unknown persons to defraud Pegasus and the HKFA by fixing or attempting to fix the result of a match between Pegasus and Yuen Long FC on February 24 last year.

Cheng was also charged with offering HK$10,000 to a Pegasus player to help fix the result.

Cheng allegedly conspired with Chan, the Lees and a Biu Chun Rangers FC player to defraud Pegasus and the HKFA by trying to fix the result of a match between Pegasus and Rangers on March 23 last year.

Chan was charged with offering HK$10,000 to a Pegasus player to fix the match.

The two Lees each allegedly accepted HK$20,000 from Cheng in March last year as a reward for contriving to fix match results.

Cheng and Lee Wai-lim are accused of conspiring with Chan and a Biu Chun Rangers player to defraud Pegasus and the HKFA by working to fix the result of a match between Pegasus and Rangers on April 13 last year.

Cheng and Chan face a charge of offering an advantage to an agent, while Lee Wai-lim and Lee Ka-ho each face one charge of being agents who accepted an advantage.

The five were arrested in October last year and will appear in the West Kowloon Magistracy tomorrow in preparation for transferring the case to the District Court. Lee Wai-lim, known as "Prince William," was selected as Hong Kong's top player in 2009.

He joined Pegasus and worked as an assistant coach in July 2015 and also played for two other clubs, Tai Po FC and South China Athletic Association.

Lee was in the Hong Kong representative team that beat Guangdong in the 2009 Guangdong-Hong Kong Cup, scoring a goal and providing two assists.

Cheng and Kwok represented Hong Kong while Chan and Lee Ka-ho were in the Hong Kong Olympic team.

Pegasus voiced regret that the ICAC had needed to move on charges against the five, who all left the club last year.

But the club declared that it would not be weakened by what allegedly occurred.

In fact, Pegasus has now adopted a "zero-tolerance attitude" toward any player who is believed to have behaved illegally in any match.

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