The head of McDonald’s restaurants in Hong Kong was convicted Wednesday of conspiracy after taking over US$300,000 in bribes from a Thai company that supplied corn to the fast food chain, authorities said.
Lau Si-sing, 49, McDonald’s former managing director, was also found guilty of pressuring the unidentified Thai company to lie to investigators, according to Hong Kong’s anti-graft agency, the Independent Commission Against Corruption.
Lau was accused of asking an executive at the food supplier to pay him kickbacks equal to some 10% of corn sales to McDonald’s in Hong Kong, officials said. The eatery serves corn as a side dish.
Between 2005 and 2007, he accepted some 2.5 million Hong Kong dollars (US$320,000) from the supplier, deposited to his and his wife’s bank accounts.
McDonald’s said Lau has been fired.
“McDonald’s does not tolerate criminal wrongdoing, or breaches of its code of conduct for employees,” the company said in a statement.
Lau joined the fast food giant in Los Angeles in 1983, according to an earlier press release on the company’s Web site.
He was the managing director of McDonald’s in the Philippines for three-years before taking up the top post in Hong Kong in May 2004. Lau also spent 10 years expanding McDonald’s business in mainland China.
McDonald’s, headquartered in Oak Brook, Illinois, operates more than 200 restaurants and employs more than 10,000 people in Hong Kong, according to its Web site.
Lau, who faces fines and jail time when he’s sentenced next month, was convicted of two conspiracy charges. He was acquitted of a bribery offense.
Category: Hong Kong