Macau businessman jailed four years for UN bribes
Friday, May 11, 2018 at 4:49PM
Richard L. Cassin in John Ashe, Macau, Ng Lap Seng

A Macau-based real estate developer who bribed UN officials in exchange for support for a conference center was sentenced Friday to 48 months in prison.

Ng Lap Seng, also known as David Ng, was fined $1 million and ordered to pay more than $300,000 in restitution to the United Nations. He also forfeited $1.5 million.

Ng, 69, will start serving his prison sentence by July 10.

He was convicted on July 27 last year after a five-week trial in New York City of two counts of violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

He was also found guilty of one count of paying bribes and gratuities, one count of money laundering, and two counts of conspiracy.

Ng bribed Francis Lorenzo, a former UN Ambassador from the Dominican Republic. He also bribed John Ashe from Antigua and Barbuda. Ashe served as the 68th President of the UN General Assembly.

Ng planned to build the Macau Conference Center as a venue for UN events. He wanted it to serve as the permanent home of the annual Global South-South Development Expo, the DOJ said Friday.

In return for bribes from Ng, Ashe and Lorenzo supported development of the conference center, the DOJ said.

Lorenzo and a co-defendant -- Heidi Hong Piao -- pleaded guilty in the case and are waiting to be sentenced.

Piao pleaded guilty to FCPA offenses and Lorenzo to bribery and money laundering.

In related actions, Jeff C. Yin -- an accountant who worked with Ng -- pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the United States. He was sentenced to seven months in prison. Yin was also known as Yin Chuan.

He and Ng were first arrested in September 2015. They allegedly lied to U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents about why they brought $4.5 million in cash to the United States from China.

Shiwei Yan -- also known as Sheri Yan -- pleaded guilty to bribery and was sentenced to 20 months in prison. She admitted paying Ashe more than $800,000 in bribes.

The bribes were intended to help Yan and Chinese businessmen win deals in Antigua.

Ashe died in 2016 and the charges against him were dismissed.

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Richard L. Cassin is the publisher and editor of the FCPA Blog.

Article originally appeared on The FCPA Blog (http://www.fcpablog.com/).
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