NEW YORK (Reuters) – Billionaire Macau actual property developer Ng Lap Seng was sentenced to 4 years in jail on Friday after being discovered responsible final July of bribing two United Nations ambassadors to assist him construct a multibillion greenback convention middle.
Ng, 69, was sentenced in Manhattan federal court docket by U.S. District Decide Vernon Broderick, who additionally ordered him to forfeit $1.5 million, representing property utilized in his crimes, and to pay a $1 million prison high-quality.
Prosecutors had sought a sentence of greater than six years, whereas Ng’s legal professionals had urged Broderick to impose a sentence of time served and let Ng return to China.
Andrew Genser, a lawyer for Ng, mentioned in court docket he would search to have Ng stay free on bail whereas he appeals his conviction. Broderick is predicted to listen to arguments on bail in a while Friday.
Genser was not instantly out there for remark after the sentencing listening to.
Ng has been beneath home arrest in a Manhattan house since shortly after his arrest in 2015. He was discovered responsible by a jury final July of fees together with bribery and cash laundering.
Prosecutors mentioned throughout Ng’s four-week trial final yr that Ng paid greater than $1 million in bribes to Francis Lorenzo, a former deputy ambassador from the Dominican Republic, and John Ashe, a former U.N. Basic Meeting president and ambassador from Antigua and Barbuda.
The prosecutors mentioned that with the 2 ambassadors’ assist, Ng hoped to construct a convention middle in Macau that may flip the previous Portuguese territory into the “Geneva of Asia,” whereas successful “fame and extra fortune” for himself. The middle was by no means constructed.
Lorenzo pleaded responsible to bribery and cash laundering, and he testified towards Ng at his trial after agreeing to cooperate with prosecutors.
Ashe was additionally criminally charged however died by accident at residence in June 2016 after dropping a barbell on his neck.
Reporting by Brendan Pierson in New York; Modifying by Richard Chang