Duo’s jail term reduced over beauty treatment blunder

The High Court on Thursday reduced the sentences of a beauty clinic founder and a technician who are in prison for manslaughter over a fatal surgery blunder in 2012.

DR Group founder Stephen Chow and his former worker Billy Chan were jailed in 2017 for 12 and 10 years respectively, for failing to protect the sterility of a blood product that was infused into a customer, causing her death.

The beauty clinic administered the CIK therapy on 46-year-old Chan Yuen-lam, by extracting and treating her blood before re-injecting it. She was later diagnosed with septic shock, and died of multiple organ failure.

The High Court dismissed the appeal over the pair’s conviction, but deducted two years from their sentences.

“Strictly speaking, the appalling injuries which were caused to the other two unfortunate customers, although part of the background to the case, evidencing as they did the highly unsafe system in place for the processing of a blood product, were not part of the count on which [Chow] stood convicted,” the judgement read.

“The focus of the case and, indeed, this appeal has been on the failure to have a safe system in place to protect the sterility and integrity of the blood product. It was that failure, which created the serious and obvious risk of death, and which in fact caused the death of the deceased.”

Separately, the doctor who administered the procedure on Chan, Mak Wan-ling, had also filed an appeal. She was jailed for 3.5 years for manslaughter.