A Chinese medicinal herbs shop proprietor and a Japanese restaurant were convicted today (August 9) at Kowloon City Magistrates' Courts for violation of the Trade Descriptions Ordinance.
The Chinese medicinal herbs shop proprietor was sentenced to carry out 160 hours of community service and to offer the victim $16,320 compensation for supplying cordyceps with a false trade description.
The Japanese restaurant was fined $4,000 for engaging in commercial practice involving misleading omission.
Hong Kong Customs earlier received information alleging that a Chinese medicinal herbs shop sold suspected fake cordyceps to a customer.
Examination by the Government Laboratory revealed that the herbs sold contained no Cordyceps sinensis, different from the trade description.
With regard to the Japanese restaurant, Hong Kong Customs conducted a test-buy operation after receiving information alleging that customers were not informed in advance of a surcharge.
After investigation, it was revealed that the restaurant charged customers service charges but customers were not informed of the charges until they settled the bills.
Customs reminds traders to comply with the requirements of the TDO.
Under the TDO, any person who supplies goods with a false trade description in the course of trade or business commits an offence.
Any trader who engages in a commercial practice that omits or hides material information and as a result causes, or is likely to cause, an average consumer to make a transactional decision, also commits an offence. The maximum penalty upon conviction is a fine of $500,000 and imprisonment for five years.
Members of the public may report any suspected violations of the TDO to the Customs 24-hour hotline 2545 6182.
Ends/Wednesday, August 9, 2017