Hong Kong Customs combats unfair trade practices at vacation club marketing company

12 Oct 2017

Hong Kong Customs today (October 12) arrested a female director of a vacation club marketing company suspected of having applied a false trade description to the service supplied and engaging in aggressive commercial practices in the course of selling vacation club membership, in contravention of the Trade Descriptions Ordinance (TDO).

Customs earlier received information alleging that a vacation club marketing company in Tsim Sha Tsui failed to provide membership after having received payment from customer. In addition, the company also imposed undue influence to customer who was forced to procure the vacation club membership. After investigation, Customs officers today arrested a 20-year-old woman. Investigation is ongoing and the arrested woman has been released on bail pending further investigation.

Customs reminds traders to comply with the requirements of the TDO and consumers to procure services at reputable shops. Before making the purchase decision, consumers should scrutinise the terms and conditions of the agreement. Consumers should firmly refuse signing any sales documents if they have no intention to purchase.

Under the TDO, any trader commits an offence when applying a false trade description to a service supplied to a consumer or engaging in aggressive commercial practices if harassment, coercion or undue influence is used to impair the consumer's freedom of choice or conduct, causing the consumer to make a transactional decision. 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/Thursday, October 12, 2017

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