Female fined for illegal guesthouse operation

     A woman was fined $9,000 at the Kowloon City Magistrates' Court today (March 7) for contravening the Hotel and Guesthouse Accommodation Ordinance.

     The court heard that in August last year, officers of the Office of the Licensing Authority (OLA), Home Affairs Department, inspected a licensed guesthouse in Nathan Road, Mong Kok. During the investigation, OLA officers found that the actual layout of the premises deviated from the registered drawing. Furthermore, the exit was obstructed and the exit sign was covered. Conditions 3, 9 and 10 of the licence were breached. The female, being the licence holder, was charged with contravening section 21(3) (a) of the Ordinance.

     A department spokesman stressed that it is a criminal offence to illegally operate or manage a guesthouse. Enforcement action will continue to be taken against illegal guesthouse operations to ensure the safety of lodgers.

     He appealed to the public to dial the OLA hotline (2881 7498), send email (hadlaenq@had.gov.hk) or download a report form from the website (www.hadla.gov.hk) to report suspected illegal guesthouses to the OLA.

Ends/Wednesday, March 7, 2012
Issued at HKT 17:31