A senior police officer was sentenced to 20 months in jail at the Fanling Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday for molesting his daughter and then pointing a gun at her head. Meanwhile, Secretary for Security Lai Tung-kwok has released new figures relating to crimes committed by police officers in recent years.

According to the charges, in 2013 the 42-year-old officer thrice molested his daughter in his residence while helping her take a shower, touching her chest and private parts. He also handcuffed his daughter and pointed a gun at her eye, Oriental Daily reported. His daughter was six-years-old at the time.

fanling magistrates court
Fanling Law Courts Building.

The defendant was charged with three counts of indecent assault and one count of common assault. He pleaded not guilty but was convicted by the court and sentenced to 20 months in jail. The defence said that they will be lodging an appeal and asked for the defendant to be released on bail in the meantime. The court turned down the request.

Defence counsel Eric Kwok said that the defendant’s psychological assessment was normal and that he had a low chance of repeating the offence.

Magistrate Raymond Wong Kwok-fai said he had already taken into account the fact that the officer had a good record in his 20 years with the force and had been awarded a certificate of commendation, RTHK reported. However, as the father of the victim, he seriously violated the trust of his daughter, he said.

‘Zero tolerance’

On Wednesday, Neighbourhood and Worker’s Service Centre lawmaker Leung Yiu-chung asked Secretary for Security Lai Tung-kwok for information on crimes allegedly committed by police officers, since there had been numerous reports in the media, Leung said.

Lai said that the force shows “zero tolerance” and has “no bias” towards police officers’ illegal or immoral behaviour. Each case is handled in accordance with the law or established procedures “in a fair and impartial manner,” he added.

Lai Tung-kwok
Lai Tung-kwok. File Photo: Stand News.

“In the past five years, a total of 55 police officers were convicted of criminal offences, such as theft, fraud, sexual offences, corruption-related offences and misconduct in public office.  During the same period, a total of 133 police officers that were involved in criminal cases were interdicted from duty, of which the lengths of interdiction varied with cases.  The police do not maintain the figures on the amount of salary paid to those officers during the period,” Lai said.

Karen is a journalist and writer covering politics and legal affairs in Hong Kong for HKFP. She has also written features on human rights, public space, regional legal developments, social and grassroots activism, and arts & culture. She is a BA and LLB graduate from the University of Hong Kong.