Parkside’s Benson Tsoi SC, teamed up with John Reading SC and Henry Chung instructed by Tanner De Witt, secured an acquittal for Mr. Leslie Swann, the Project Director of Jacobs China Ltd who was in charge of the concrete compression tests for the “mega project” Hong Kong–Zhuhai–Macau Bridge (the longest sea crossing and the longest open-sea fixed link in the world) against allegations of conspiracy to defraud and statutory fraud in connection with falsification of the concrete compression test results for the bridge.

The charged technicians who conducted falsifications of the concrete test results and a senior member of Jacobs were all convicted of fraud.  Mr. Leslie Swann was acquitted after trial, the Judge accepted the Defence argument that he had no knowledge of the falsification of the test results and therefore did not conceal the truth from the Hong Kong Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD).

The fraud related to a large number of Jacobs’ technicians who falsified concrete test results by substituting the subject concrete cubes with other materials. The matter was investigated internally but those findings were not disclosed to the CEDD at the relevant time.  The matter was then exposed after an ICAC investigation.

 The Hong Kong–Zhuhai–Macau Bridge (HZMB) is a 55 kilometre (34 miles) bridge–tunnel system consisting of a series of three cable-stayed bridges, an undersea tunnel, and four artificial islands. It is both the longest sea crossing and the longest open-sea fixed link in the world. The HZMB spans the Lingding and Jiuzhou channels, connecting Hong Kong and Macau with Zhuhai— a major city on the Pearl River Delta in China.

The HZM Bridge was designed to last for 120 years and cost ¥127 billion (US$18.8 billion) to build. The cost of constructing the Main Bridge was estimated at ¥51.1 billion (US$7.56 billion) funded by bank loans and shared among the governments of mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

The reasons for verdict are available here.