Smugglers escape Hong Kong police by speedboat after dawn raid on HK$10 million triad-run operation
Police seize 84 boxes filled with birds nest, computer tablets, mobile phones and computer components
The early morning tranquillity at a Hong Kong scenic park was disturbed on Thursday after triad-backed smugglers made a daring speedboat getaway following a police ambush.
Five men were arrested and more than HK$10 million worth of goods were confiscated during the raid at Wong Shek pier in Sai Kung Country Park.
Hong Kong marine police were watching the pier after receiving a tip-off, according to a source. At about 6.30am, a speedboat berthed at the pier while two delivery vans and another vehicle showed up.
Officers ambushed the smugglers as they began loading boxes from the vehicles onto the speedboat. While police managed to capture five of the men at the pier, several others managed to flee on the high-powered speedboat, which was equipped with two outboard engines.
Police attempted to chase down the smugglers as they fled towards the mainland, but were outrun.
All 84 boxes were seized and the three vehicles were impounded. According to police, the boxes were filled with bird’s nests, computer tablets, mobile phones and computer components.
“The consignment was bound for Huizhou in Guangdong,” a police source said.
One of the five Hongkongers arrested during the operation included the suspected ringleader of the triad-run smuggling syndicate, which only became active recently after laying low for more than a year, the police source told the Post.
On Friday morning, the five suspects, aged between 20 and 56, were being held for questioning and had not been charged.
“We believed we have dealt a heavy blow against the syndicate as they lost a large amount of goods,” the source said.
The Customs and Excise Department is following up the case.
Under the Import and Export Ordinance, importing or exporting unmanifested cargo carries a maximum penalty of a HK$2 million and seven years jail.