Patrick Ho Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison for International Bribery and Money Laundering Offenses

New York–CHI PING PATRICK HO, a/k/a “Patrick C.P. Ho,” a/k/a “He Zhiping,” was sentenced today to three years in prison for his role in a multi-year, multimillion-dollar scheme to bribe top officials of Chad and Uganda in exchange for business advantages for CEFC China Energy Company Limited (“CEFC China”). 

In addition to his prison term, HO, 69, a citizen of the People’s Republic of China who resided in Hong Kong prior to his arrest in November 2017 and has been detained since his arrest, was fined $400,000.

HO was convicted of violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”), money laundering, and conspiracy to commit the same, in December 2018.

HO orchestrated and executed two bribery schemes to pay top officials of Chad and Uganda in exchange for business advantages for CEFC China, a Shanghai-based multibillion-dollar conglomerate that operates internationally in multiple sectors, including oil, gas, and banking. 

At the center of both schemes was HO, the secretary-general of a non-governmental organization based in Hong Kong and Arlington, Virginia, and registered as a charitable entity in the United States, the China Energy Fund Committee (“CEFC NGO”), which held “Special Consultative Status” with the United Nations (“UN”) Economic and Social Council.  CEFC NGO was funded by CEFC China.

In the first scheme (the “Chad Scheme”), HO, on behalf of CEFC China, offered a $2 million cash bribe, hidden within gift boxes, to Idriss Déby, the president of Chad, in an effort to obtain valuable oil rights from the Chadian government. 

In the second scheme (the “Uganda Scheme”), HO caused a $500,000 bribe to be paid, via wires transmitted through New York, to an account designated by Sam Kutesa, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Uganda, who had recently completed his term as the president of the UN General Assembly.  HO also schemed to pay a $500,000 cash bribe to Yoweri Museveni, the president of Uganda, and offered to provide both Kutesa and Museveni with additional corrupt benefits by “partnering” with them and their families in future joint ventures in Uganda.