The public prosecutor in Macau filed charges this week against Joseph Lau, chairman and chief executive of Chinese Estates, alleging he offered a HKD20 million (USD2.6 million) bribe to a former government official. The prosecutor says Lau offered the bribe to secure the purchase of the site of a future development, Reuters reports.
Lau, 61, is Hong Kong's fifth-richest man and worth $6.5 billion, according to Forbes. The former Goldman Sachs employee was one of the first people to buy a Boeing-787 Dreamliner for personal use, according to Reuters.
He also collects art and red wine, invests heavily in London property and prefers to date Miss Hong Kongs, the wire reported.
Lau's company, Chinese Estates, is building a multi-tower luxury development on the site in question. The official sold Chinese Estates the entire company that owned the 78,000 square meters (840,000 square feet) of land as a result of the alleged bribe, according to the charges.
The former official who allegedly accepted the bribe was Macau's Secretary for Transport and Public Works and the most senior government figure ever arrested by Macau's anti-graft agency, according to the news reports. He is already serving a 28-year sentence in jail for accepting other bribes.