Happier times when Rafael Hui (centre) was chief secretary... but now bankrupt
If you file for bankruptcy in Hong Kong because you owe say, HK$75 million, then you aren't allowed to take a taxi or use a credit card.
That's the fate that has fallen on former chief secretary Rafael Hui Si-yan, 65, who is involved in a corruption case with Sun Hung Kai Properties co-chairmen Thomas Kwok Ping-kwong and Raymond Kwok Ping-luen.
Yesterday the High Court declared Hui bankrupt for failing to repay unspecified debts to the Bank of East Asia, but he also owes money to other lenders: Hang Seng Bank, Honour Finance (a company owned by Sun Hung Kai Properties), Chong Hing Bank and Standard Chartered Bank.
Some media reports suggest the debts amount to HK$75 million, with an unconfirmed HK$60 million to BEA. One wonders what he used the money for.
Other non-benefits of being bankrupt is that you can't use credit cards, can't hire an expensive lawyer unless your family will foot the bill, and you can't live in a big house either again unless your family owns it.
We will probably eventually find out how Hong Kong's former No. 2 official got into such a deep financial hole, but in the meantime, it's public transport for Hui like the rest of us plebs.