TVB Artistes Among Those Arrested For JPEX Scandal

Hong Kong has been rocked by the arrest of TVB actor Cheng Chun Hei in connection with an alleged fraud case related to the cryptocurrency trading platform JPEX.

Cheng, 29, was apprehended in Tai Po and, with his head covered, escorted by police to Nam Hang Tsuen in the Tai Tong area of Yuen Long, where his white Porsche was impounded. Reports indicate that the luxury car, costing around HK$1.4 million, is suspected to have been purchased with criminal proceeds.

This arrest is part of a wider crackdown, with 20 individuals already in custody concerning this fraud case that involves over HK$1.5 billion in assets. The South China Morning Post reported that Cheng is believed to be a member of a fraud syndicate linked to JPEX, a cryptocurrency platform that has been operating without a licence, as highlighted by the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) on September 13.

Cheng is not the only celebrity implicated in this scandal. In the previous month, TVB star Jacquelin Ch’ng and Hong Kong actor Julian Cheung were also questioned in relation to their alleged connections with JPEX. The investigation was triggered when the SFC informed the police about the unlicensed operation of the cryptocurrency exchange platform in Hong Kong. To date, over 2,400 complaints against JPEX have been registered with Hong Kong authorities.

Cheng’s arrest adds to the growing list of individuals, including celebrities, associated with JPEX. Previously, Julian Cheung, Jacqueline Ch’ng, and Taiwanese singer Nine Chen were reported as ambassadors for JPEX but distanced themselves from the platform after the arrests.

The saga has unfolded with multiple arrests, and Cheng’s case is just one facet. The police also arrested a 28-year-old man, surnamed Lau, in Tuen Mun. Lau is believed to be a member of the criminal syndicate linked to JPEX. His residence was raided, and a white Porsche sports car, suspected to be connected to criminal activities, was seized. The number of arrests now stands at 20.

Cheng, a TVB contract artist, joined the broadcaster’s artiste training class in 2017 and debuted in 2018. He has featured in popular dramas such as “OMG, Your Honour” (2018) and “Brutally Young” (2020). Additionally, he gained recognition by securing fourth place in the dancing contest “Dance For Life” in 2021.

JPEX’s alleged fraudulent activities have drawn significant attention, with more than 2,500 victims and reported losses totaling up to HK$1.5 billion. The SFC’s revelation about the unlicensed operation of JPEX prompted the police to initiate a thorough investigation. The joint working group formed by the police and SFC aims to enhance cooperation in monitoring and investigating illegal activities related to virtual asset trading platforms.

As of October 4, the police have received 2,467 complaints about JPEX, involving losses of approximately HK$1.52 billion. The arrests extend beyond the alleged fraud syndicate, with additional suspects, including Chan Siu-lung, CEO of CryptoPARD, and an ex-director surnamed Li, taken into custody on suspicion of conspiracy to defraud.

The unfolding events have revealed the magnitude of the scandal, as more individuals, including celebrities and business figures, are implicated. The financial losses, frozen assets, and ongoing investigations signal the significant impact of the JPEX case on Hong Kong’s financial landscape. The controversy surrounding JPEX continues to unfold, with the total number of arrests now reaching 26, and the investigation showing no signs of concluding.

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