They were cleaned out

PUBLISHED : Monday, 28 May, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 28 May, 2012, 12:00am


Nine homeless people are suing the government. They say government workers threw all their belongings away during a clean-up. The judge has asked them to see if they can reach an agreement with the government before the case comes to court again, on June 21.

The street sleepers say that among the goods they lost were identity cards, phones and bank books.

The clean-up was carried out by the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department and police. They say they followed the law in disposing of half a tonne of 'rubbish' from under a bridge in Sham Shui Po on February 15.

They also took clothes, blankets and other goods.

The judge asked the government to define 'rubbish' as it seemed some of the goods were valuable.

The street sleepers had not been told about the clean-up. They were not able to take back their belongings, even though they were standing nearby.

Cheung Muk-luen, 56, one of the nine street sleepers in court, said: 'I was awakened by a kick and told to leave when they [the cleaners and police officers] came.

'I was barefoot and not allowed to take back anything when they put my belongings onto the truck.'