Source: High Court of Hong Kong
|Court||High Court (Hong Kong)|
|Judgment Date||11 September 1992|
J U D G M E N T
1. All these three applications for Judicial Review cover similar ground. They relate to families who have paid large sums of money to obtain passports from the Kingdom of Lesotho and nationalisation as citizens of that country.
2. The families all originate from China. In each case a response was made to an invitation to apply for citizenship of Lesotho in consideration of a sum of HK$250,000. It needs to be emphasised that all of the applications were made above board and in good faith. The payments of the said consideration were made to solicitors representing the Honorary Consul here and receipts were issued by the solicitors.
3. The applications were made in the middle of last year. In August, two of the families went to Lesotho to attend a ceremony when Certificates of Naturalisation signed by the Minister of the Interior were presented to them. The 3rd family, the Yins, did not go to Lesotho as Mrs. Yin was in the late stages of pregnancy. Their daughter, Amy, was born on the 20th December.
4. All of the families applied to the Director of Immigration here in the latter part of November 1991 for a change of their status. In each case a successful business had been commenced in Hong Kong and on the basis of their citizenship of Lesotho they were applying to be allowed to remain in Hong Kong.
5. Towards the end of December rumours began to circulate that 276 Lesotho passports issued to Chinese persons had been cancelled.
6. Unfortunately these rumours proved to be well-founded. On the 10th January 1992 The Director of Imigration received from the British High Commission in Lesotho a notification in this form :
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Lesotho presents its compliments to all Diplomatic Missions, Consulates and Trade mission accredited to Lesotho and has the honour to advise the latter that the following Lesotho International Passports, as per attached list, have been cancelled and declared invalid with immediate effect.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Lesotho avails itself of this opportunity to renew to all Diplomatic Missions, Consulates and Trade Mission accredited to Lesotho, the assurances of its highest consideration.
3 December 1991”
7. The names of all of the members of the three families were included in the attached list.
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