Officer disciplined for losing handgun

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 21 June, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 21 June, 2008, 12:00am

Two incidents in which on-duty marine police lost their handguns have been investigated and one of the officers disciplined, a police report submitted to the Legislative Council's security panel yesterday says.

Action could be taken against the other officer if government lawyers considered his conduct merited it, the force says in the report.

Newspaper reports at the time of the incidents said both occurred while the officers were aboard speedboats.

Police said the officer in the first case, which happened last June, was disciplined for breaching orders, but would not give details of the punishment.

The force said it had finished investigating the second case, which happened in November.

Department of Justice advice had been sought on the investigators' findings, after which a decision would be taken as to whether disciplinary action was warranted.

In its report to the Legco panel, the force said investigations showed the officer in the first case had been negligent by 'failing to secure all items of arms and equipment issued to him'.

Newspapers reported at the time of the incident that the veteran officer was on a speedboat near the island of Lung Kwu Chau.

The gun slipped into the sea without his knowledge and he only discovered it was missing when the vessel returned to base, newspaper reports said.

Divers had searched in vain for the gun.

In the second case, newspapers reported that the officer lost his handgun while patrolling on a speedboat near Tsim Bei Tsui in Deep Bay. The gun was not recovered.

A police spokesman said the force's investigations found no flaw in the design of the handgun holders.