NG KWOK PIU PHILIP AND OTHERS v. TO PUI KUI AND OTHERS

HCA 51/2007

IN THE HIGH COURT OF THE

HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION

COURT OF FIRST INSTANCE

ACTION NO 51 OF 2007

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BETWEEN
NG KWOK PIU PHILIP 1st Plaintiff
CONFEDERATED ASSETS GROUP LIMITED 2nd Plaintiff
WELL ARTS ENTERPRISES LIMITED 3rd Plaintiff
and
TO PUI KUI 1st Defendant
NG KWOK TAI ANDREW 2nd Defendant
NG YIU CHI ELEANOR 3rd Defendant
NG SHEUNG MING ASSOCIATION LIMITED 4th Defendant

____________

AND

HCA 1040/2009

ACTION NO 1040 OF 2009

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BETWEEN
TO PUI KUI 1st Plaintiff
NG KWOK TAI ANDREW 3rd Plaintiff
and
HULTUCKTONG COMMERCIAL & INDUSTRIAL COMPANY LIMITED 1st Defendant
CONFEDERATED ASSETS GROUP LIMITED 2nd Defendant
WELL ARTS ENTERPRISES LIMITED 3rd Defendant
NG KWOK PIU PHILIP 4th Defendant
NG OI CHE STEPHANIE 5th Defendant
NG YIU CHI ELEANOR 6th Defendant

____________

AND

HCA 1041/2009

ACTION NO 1041 OF 2009

____________

BETWEEN
TO PUI KUI 1st Plaintiff
NG KAY CHEE ANGELA 3rd Plaintiff
NG KWOK TAI ANDREW 4th Plaintiff
and
HULTUCKTONG COMPANY LIMITED 1st Defendant
CONFEDERATED ASSETS GROUP LIMITED 2nd Defendant
WELL ARTS ENTERPRISES LIMITED 3rd Defendant
NG KWOK PIU PHILIP 4th Defendant
NG OI CHE STEPHANIE 5th Defendant
NG YIU CHI ELEANOR 6th Defendant

____________

(Heard Together)

Before: Hon Mimmie Chan J in Chambers

Date of Hearing: 23 December 2014
Date of Decision: 23 December 2014

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D E C I S I O N

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1. It is true that discovery is a continuing obligation. However, since the CJR, the courts have endeavoured to make it clear to theparties that the court will not condone late discovery made at the commencement of trial, or at the eve of trial. The CJR introducedmeasures to ensure early preparation for trial by the parties and the court will rarely exercise its discretion to admit late documentsor late evidence, in the absence of exceptional circumstances or unless good reasons exist to allow the late production to ensurethe just resolution of the dispute.

2. In this case, the background of which I have set out in my earlier decision of 6 March 2014 and will not repeat here, no good reasonhas been advanced by Philip’s camp as to why the late disclosure of the Trust Documents should be permitted for inclusion in theevidence for the trial in January 2015. Oversight, distraction by other developments in court, are not good reasons. A mere reminderof the relevant dates should adequately explain the unjustified delay. The Actions were set down in September 2011, for trial tocommence in September 2012 as originally envisaged, pursuant to an order for consolidation made in September 2010. The last 2 hearingsbefore me took place in February and October 2014.

3. In any event, Philip’s camp accept that the Trust Documents are not of primary importance and do not directly relate to the issuesto be resolved at the trial. Discovery of documents will only be ordered if they are necessary. I am not satisfied that the TrustDocuments are necessary for determination of the remaining issues to be dealt with in January 2015 and at this very late stage, furtherdiscovery will not be permitted.

4. The application for discovery is refused, with costs.

(Mimmie Chan)
Judge of the Court of First Instance
High Court

Ms Teresa Cheng SC and Mr Adrian Lai, instructed by S Cheng & Yeung, for the 1st to 3rd plaintiffs in HCA 51/2007

Ms Teresa Cheng SC and Mr Adrian Lai, instructed by S Cheng & Yeung, for the 1st to 5th defendants in HCA 1040/2009

Mr Teresa Cheng SC and Mr Adrian Lai, instructed by S Cheng & Yeung, for the 1st to 5th defendants in HCA 1041/2009

Mr Vincent Lung, instructed by Vremeli Chan & Co, for the 1st and 4th defendants in HCA 51/2007

Mr Vincent Lung, instructed by Vremeli Chan & Co, for the 1st plaintiff in HCA 1040/2009

Mr Vincent Lung, instructed by Vremeli Chan & Co, for the 1st and 3rd plaintiffs in HCA 1041/2009

Mr Ronald Tang and Mr Jerome Liu, instructed by Wong Poon Chan Law Co, for the 3rd defendant in HCA 51/2007

Mr Ronald Tang and Mr Jerome Liu, instructed by Wong Poon Chan Law Co, for the 6th defendant in HCA 1040/2009

Mr Ronald Tang and Mr Jerome Liu, instructed by Wong Poon Chan Law Co, for the 6th defendant in HCA 1041/2009

The 2nd defendant in HCA 51/2007, the 3rd plaintiff in HCA 1040/2009, and the 4th plaintiff in HCA 1041/2009 (Mr Ng Kwok Tai Andrew) appeared in person