Hong Kong expat banker lifestyles slammed after grisly murders

Published:  11 Nov at 6 PM
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Tagged: China, Hong Kong, Banking
Expats working in Hong Kong’s famous banking and financial sector are taking flak for their hedonistic lifestyles following the gruesome murder of two Indonesian girls by one of their number.

The victims, found in an upmarket condo just a short walk from the ex-colony’s red light district, were reputedly killed by Rurik Jutting, a British expat who formerly worked as a securities trader for Merrill Lynch. The accused man was a regular on the strip’s girlie bars, with drugs and sex toys found in the apartment adding to the banking sector’s tarnished reputation with Hong Kong residents.

Mutilations found on the victims further fuelled a backlash in the Hong Kong Chinese community against the behaviour of highly-paid expat financiers from Western countries. Many residents believe the bankers and traders treat Hong Kong as a personal playground, ignoring local culture and creating an ugly image for the city.

One business owner who’d lived in the city for most of his life told reporters that expats’ high level of disposable income and lack of morals have created a climate of drug-taking and prostitution. He added that the expat bankers' lifestyles go against traditional Chinese values of family, hard work and social responsibility.

Comments on local Chinese and English social media sites are highly critical of aspects of Western behaviour since the killings were discovered, with one response stating that many expats believe they are God once they arrive in Asia. Another commented that expats’ ego and superiority complexes foster a belief that they are above the law.

A number of foreign workers are now afraid for their safety in a city still split by pro-democracy protests. Local people say that wealthy foreigners are part of the problem in a region with a massive wealth gap between rich and poor, and long-term expats living in the city admit that, for new arrivals, Hong Kong and its nightlife represents an extreme rock-star fantasy world with no rules.
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