Notorious criminal Yip Kai-foon should be cleared of crimes which left him jailed for 41 years because 'outrageous' publicity had made a fair trial impossible, a court heard yesterday. Yip, 36, once Hong Kong's most wanted man, was portrayed as a cold-blooded mass murderer, a ruthless gang boss and 'the king of robbery' by sections of the media before his trial, appeal judges heard. His barrister, Gary Plowman SC, said: 'The pre-trial publicity in this case was so prejudicial, it was no longer possible to hold a fair trial.' There was a real risk the jurors who convicted Yip of shooting at police and possessing 1.8kg of explosives had been influenced by the 'outrageously prejudicial and false' material, he said. Mr Plowman said it was time for the courts to take action to ensure there were no further abuses in high-profile cases. Yip, who was left confined to a wheelchair after being gunned down in a shoot-out with police in Kennedy Town in May last year, is seeking to have his convictions overturned. Mr Plowman said the judge who jailed him, Mr Justice Michael Stuart-Moore, should not have allowed the trial to proceed. Prejudicial material was to be found in magazines, television programmes, news broadcasts and Chinese-language newspapers, he told the court. There was even a video called King of Robbers, which claimed to be based on Yip's life and was on the top-seller list at KPS shortly before the trial. This was said to have portrayed Yip as 'an utterly ruthless and cold-blooded mass murderer with no redeeming features'. Mr Plowman told the court some of the published material had reported Yip as committing the crimes he had been about to go on trial for. Director of Public Prosecutions Grenville Cross SC argued the judge was entitled to allow the trial to go ahead on the basis that jurors were sensible people who would ignore the potentially prejudicial material. The jury in Yip's trial had been strongly directed by Mr Justice Stuart-Moore to reach their verdicts only on the evidence given in court. Mr Justice Noel Power, Mr Justice Barry Mortimer and Mr Justice Simon Mayo will give their ruling at a later date.