**Maxim's, Hong Kong's Largest Chinese Restaurant Group, is Busted Offering Endangered Whale Shark Fin Upon Request** PRESS RELEASE / ATTENTION NEWS EDITORS / FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE HONG KONG (09 June 2017) — A WildAid activist in Hong Kong, posing as a young person planning their wedding, has uncovered Maxim's restaurant managers across the city offering endangered and near threatened shark species. These include; whale shark, basking shark, silky shark, bull shark and lemon shark. This is despite claims by Maxim's Group that it serves only blue shark. The telephone conversations recorded by WildAid confirm the results of a recent study by Hong Kong Shark Foundation (HKSF) which found in May that threatened and endangered shark species are being routinely sold – even promoted – in Chinese restaurants across Hong Kong. Activists and ocean lovers will gather outside Maxim's Palace, their flagship restaurant at Hong Kong's City Hall, to protest the restaurant's ongoing shark fin sales on Saturday 10 June at 1pm. Whale shark, basking shark and silky shark are listed on Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), meaning that trade in their products "must be controlled in order to avoid utilization incompatible with their survival". The two investigations point to the fact that it is easy to order endangered shark species in Hong Kong restaurants 'upon request'. Despite claims by Maxim's management that it serves only blue sharks in its restaurants, the undercover footage demonstrates that the chain privately offers other more 'exotic' species. These are usually made available by restaurant staff acting autonomously of management to please their more demanding clientèle. Laxity and poor transparency is endemic across Hong Kong's Chinese restaurant industry, and supply chain secrecy is a problem in Hong Kong's notoriously crime-riddled shark fin trade.