Hong Kong passer-by foils US$3 million hold-up by two masked robbers outside MTR station
16-year-old suspect claims triad boss promised him HK$1m reward for job
A Hongkonger foiled a US$3 million hold-up and subdued one of two masked robbers as they attacked a middle-aged man and tried to snatch his rucksack containing the money on Monday.
Police learned the 16-year-old suspect arrested outside Sheung Shui MTR station had received an order from his Wo Shing Wo triad boss to rob the man, whom he was told would appear with US$3 million, according to a source.
“He was told when and where the victim carrying US$3 million would be,” the source said of the detained suspect.
It is understood the teenager would have received HK$1 million for the job if he had carried it out.
The teenager and his accomplice, wearing face masks, lay in wait outside the car park entrance of Fanling Town Centre on Fanling Station Road before the victim appeared just before 8am on Monday.
The two unarmed culprits assaulted the victim and tried to snatch his rucksack, police said, but the victim put up a struggle.
“During the scuffle, the victim shouted for help, alerting a male passer-by who helped subdue one of the two robbers,” the source said. “The other robber then fled empty-handed.”
He said the victim picked up his rucksack and left before police arrived.
The source claimed it was possible the victim was a courier hired by underground money exchangers to transport cash across the mainland border.
Under mainland law, travellers are in general allowed to carry up to US$5,000 (HK$39,000) in foreign currency and 20,000 yuan (HK$23,800) over the border without declaring the amount. However, the cash limit also depends on the number of exits an individual makes within a certain period.
The teenager, arrested at the scene, was pinned to the floor by the passer-by until officers arrived. He suffered minor injuries to his knees and was taken to North District Hospital for treatment.
Police combed the area. No additional arrests were made.
It is understood the passer-by, who is in his 20s, was with his girlfriend when the incident happened.
Detectives from Tai Po district crime squad were handling the case.
According to official statistics, police handled 102 reports of robbery across the city in the first seven months of this year, down 36 per cent compared with 161 cases over the same period last year.