The former lover and fortune teller of eccentric billionaire Nina Wang has been sentenced to 12 years in jail after he was convicted of forging her will, setting himself up to inherit her multi-billion dollar fortune.
Peter Chan was sentenced Friday in a long-running case that saw him attempting to pass himself off as the beneficiary of Nina Wang’s fortune. He forged a will which would have allowed him to inherit her $10.7 billion estate, and act which the judge called “shameless, wicked and born of unparalleled greed.”
Wang died in 2007, and was known as Asia’s richest woman during her life. She passed at the age of 69 after losing her battle with cancer. She met Chan in 1992. He was married with a resume that included waiting tables and bartending, but was hired as a spiritual guru to help Wang find her husband. The unlikely pair allegedly engaged in a long-lasting affair soon after.
The case has proven to be a hit among Chinese observers and the media, with many twists and turns including sex, big money and fraud allegations. Chan’s affair with Wang was also a matter of intense public interest. Her quirky demeanor in life (she often wore girlish outfits and pigtails in her hair) as well as the age gap between the two lovers (Chan was 20 years her junior) made for steamy headlines.
But it’s all over now, as 53-year-old Chan has been convicted of forgery and using a false instrument. He has been sentenced to 12 years on each count, which will be served concurrently.
Now called “Tony,” Chan is a former feng shui master and fortune teller of sorts who recently converted to Christianity.
“I have no doubt you are nothing more than a clever and no doubt beguiling charlatan,” the judge said, apparently not convinced by Chan’s religious conversion.
Local media reported that Chan’s wife cried in the gallery while he rocked back and forth nervously.
Nina Wang had intended to leave a majority of her wealth to charity. That will was deemed legitimate.
“Instead of benefiting mankind as Nina Wang wanted, the only one to benefit would have been you,” the judge said.