IN THE HIGH COURT OF THE
HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION
COURT OF FIRST INSTANCE
MAGISTRACY APPEAL NO. 855 OF 1998
(On Appeal from ESC 2570/98)
Coram: The Honourable Madam Justice Beeson in Court
Date of Hearing: 17 December 1998
Date of Judgment: 17 December 1998
J U D G M E N T
1. This Appellant was found guilty after trial of Theft of a telephone by finding. He found the telephone in a tram and appropriatedit to his own purposes. When first questioned by the police he lied as to how he came into possession saying he purchased it, later,he changed that statement.
2. The Magistrate in a very thorough Statement of Findings considered all the matters relating to this case. He indicated that he hadgiven himself a Lucas direction and although it is submitted by counsel for the Appellant that he did not adequately direct himselfin this regard, I find that he did. Further, it was submitted that he did not take into account the fact that what was given to thepolice by this Appellant, was what is called a mixed statement, containing both exculpatory and inculpatory parts.
3. Again, I am satisfied that the Magistrate was well aware of the status of the cautioned statement; that he was aware of its mixednature and that he took that into account in reaching his almost inevitable conclusion that this Appellant had committed the theft.
4. Accordingly, I dismiss the appeal against conviction.
5. In respect of the appeal against sentence, Appellant was sentenced to 3 months for this theft. I should point out that he has 7 previousTheft convictions, a matter that was known to the Magistrate. Most of those are for offences of pickpocketing.
6. The Magistrate’s sentence appears to be a lenient one given that this conviction was reached after a full trial and I do not proposeto disturb it. The appeal against sentence is dismissed.
Mr. Albert Wong, S.G.C., for D.P.P.
Mr. Sterling Tsu, instructed by Messrs. Cheung, Chan & Chung, for Appellant.