Two officers took bribes from gangs, says ICAC
Anti-graft agency alleges the pair helped scupper criminal investigations
Two police officers arrested by the ICAC on Tuesday took bribes from triads in return for scuppering police investigations, the graft busters alleged last night.
'The arrested police officers had allegedly provided assistance and attempted to frustrate a number of police cases against them or their associates,' a spokesman for the Independent Commission Against Corruption said.
Sources said that in one case, the officers allegedly helped gangsters make changes to official police statements over a wounding offence.
The detective senior inspector and detective senior constable, said to be from the Shamshuipo police district, were among 12 people arrested in Tuesday's ICAC operation.
Other officers from West Kowloon, including a chief inspector from the regional headquarters, have been invited to assist police in their inquiries. They were not arrested. The others arrested included six suspected triad members and four employees of a gambling cruise liner.
'Enquiries also revealed that one of the suspected triad members, who was wanted by the police for his alleged involvement in a case of assault and criminal damage, had been hiding on the cruise liner to avoid apprehension,' said the ICAC spokesman.
'The arrested staff members of the cruise liner were alleged to have assisted in harbouring the wanted man.'
The ICAC launched the operation, codenamed Flint, on Tuesday after complaints were made against the officers. Squads of ICAC investigators launched raids across the city, including Mongkok, Tsim Sha Tsui and Tai Kok Tsui.
The senior inspector was arrested when he returned to work on Tuesday at the Shamshuipo police station, while the senior constable was arrested at the Cheung Sha Wan station, also when he arrived for work.
The ICAC said the Immigration Department and police had helped its investigators to board and conduct searches on the cruise ship in Tsim Sha Tsui when it returned to Hong Kong waters.
An ICAC spokesman said investigations into the case were continuing.
Several police corruption cases related to vice operations were exposed by the ICAC last year.
In October last year, divisional commander of the Shamshuipo district, Superintendent Philip Cheng Po-yan, was sentenced to 12 weeks' jail for attempted fraud and deception.
In November, four policemen and a former customs officer were convicted of running a brothel, perverting the course of justice and inciting others to rob.
In the same month, the ICAC charged a police sergeant for allegedly tipping off a brothel ahead of anti-vice raids in Mongkok from August 2003 to May last year.