Two pro-democracy lawmakers said on Wednesday that they would not give up on their campaign to investigate former chief executive Leung Chun-ying over the HK$50 million payment he received from Australian engineering firm UGL.
The Department of Justice on the same day said that there was insufficient evidence to convict former Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying for corruption and misconduct in public office.
Democratic Party lawmakers Lam Cheuk-ting and Andrew Wan had launched a crowdfunding campaign earlier this year, calling for a local and overseas investigation into Leung. Lam and Wan said they were “shocked and disappointed” by the decision of department not to prosecute Leung.
“We will continue our work in Hong Kong, UK and Australia, and we are discussing follow-up actions in these locations. We will not easily give up, we will continue to look for the truth,” they said in a statement on Wednesday.
Leung received HK$50million from Australian engineering firm UGL as part of a takeover deal with insolvent property company DTZ, to prevent him from joining a rival firm within two years. The deal was signed shortly after Leung ran for chief executive in 2011. Leung received part of the payment after he became chief executive in 2012.
Wan demanded the Department of Justice reveal its full legal advice over the incident and explain the decision at the Legislative Council.
“The Department of Justice must explain fully, otherwise it will severely damage Hong Kong’s image, and will make the public lose confidence in rule of law and governance,” Wan said.
The Department of Justice also ruled against prosecuting pro-Beijing lawmaker Holden Chow, who last year allowed Leung to revise the scope of a Legislative Council investigation into Leung. Chow was the vice-chair of the investigation committee.
Lam Cheuk-ting said it was unreasonable that Chow had not been charged.
“[The incident] clearly fits with the definition of misconduct in public office,” Lam said.
Holden Chow said on Wednesday that he hoped the decision marked the end of the incident.
“I respect the investigation and the professional decision made independently in accordance with the law by the Independent Commission Against Corruption and the Department of Justice,” he said.
Leung has yet to make any public statements.
Business and Professionals Alliance for Hong Kong party lawmaker Priscilla Leung said on Wednesday that she would ask the legislative investigation committee into Leung to stop its operation.
She said there was no reason for the committee to carry on, given that the Independent Commission Against Corruption has stopped its investigation, and the Department of Justice has decided it would not prosecute Leung or Chow.