A 55-year-old woman was jailed for 39 months in the Hong Kong District Court on Thursday for arranging fake marriages between migrant workers and Hong Kong men.

The defendant Chan Oi-fan, who was identified as the mastermind of the scheme, was rebuked by the Deputy District Judge Ernest Lin Kam-hung for taking advantage of government agency loopholes to commit the crime and told that her offense publicly humiliated the government system, Apple Daily reported.

The defendant was earlier convicted of four counts of conspiracy to defraud and one count of perverting the course of justice.

It is understood that she previously spent six years in jail for drug trafficking.

The court earlier heard that the syndicate Chan represented lured domestic workers into fake marriages with Hong Kong men, after which they could apply for residence as the dependents of their “husbands” and then become free to take up any employment in the city.

The syndicate had arranged approximately 17 fake marriages and made around HK$2 million, involving 37 people aged between 29 and 65. Those arrested included 22 Hong Kong residents, two from mainland China, nine female domestic workers from India and four female domestic workers from Nepal.

Read: Hong Kong phoney marriage syndicate busted