Car rams into lobby of Sing Tao Building

The stolen vehicle was abandoned and set alight after the pre-dawn attack, which happened weeks after a raid at another media organisation

PUBLISHED : Friday, 31 August, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 31 August, 2012, 3:19am

A car rammed into the large plate glass windows of the Sing Tao News Corporation headquarters in a pre-dawn attack yesterday - three weeks after masked men marched into another Hong Kong media organisation and started smashing up computers.

The latest attack targeted the company's headquarters in Tong Wong Road, Shau Kei Wan, at about 3.30am.

A witness saw the car reverse at high-speed into the lobby of the building, sending glass flying as it shattered two three-metre tall windows.

The driver then accelerated away and the abandoned car was found on fire 15 minutes later in Wang Kee Street, Kowloon Bay. By the time firemen put out the flames, the car was a burnt-out wreck.

Police said that at 3am, the 41-year-old owner of the car had reported its disappearance from Broadway Street in Cheung Sha Wan, near Lai Chi Kok.

An officer described the ram-raid as an organised attack. "They stole a car, used it in the attack and set it alight to destroy evidence," he said.

Sing Tao News Corporation's chief executive officer, Lo Wing-hung, said there were other tenants in the building, adding: "We did not receive any threats or warnings, so we do not know whether we were the assailants' target."

On August 8, four masked men marched into the ninth-floor Wan Chai offices of online newspaper InMedia and then smashed computers and a television before fleeing. Two employees who witnessed the attack were uninjured.

The anti-triad squad of Wan Chai police is investigating that attack and so far no one has been arrested.

The police officer said the Hong Kong Island regional crime unit was in charge of the latest case and was looking into whether or not the two attacks this month were linked.

The building, Sing Tao's headquarters since moving from Kowloon Bay six years ago, houses the Sing Tao Daily, Headline Daily and The Standard newspapers. In September 2008, black paint was thrown over an entrance to the Shau Kei Wan building and white paint splashed on a window.