A police officer shot an illegal immigrant who tried to attack him with a large pick on a Shekkipmei hill yesterday. The mainlander, who was shot in his left forearm, was taken to Caritas Medical Centre for treatment and later transferred to Queen Elizabeth Hospital. The constable was on motorcycle patrol when he first spotted the man acting suspiciously at a Lung Cheung Road hillside near Beacon Height at about 11.30am, police said. As the officer stopped to conduct a routine stop and search, the man immediately ran up the slope to escape. A sergeant joined the pursuit after the constable called for reinforcements. 'After a two- or three-minute chase, the mainlander was located about 20 feet away from his hideout,' a police officer involved in the investigation said. 'As the constable approached, the man picked up a mattock and went to attack him. The officer fired one shot after the suspect ignored a verbal warning. 'He fired another shot as the suspect continued to run to attack him and repeatedly ignored his order to stop.' The policeman, attached to a patrol sub-unit in Shekkipmei, was unhurt. Police also revealed crimes committed by illegal immigrants in Yuen Long increased sharply in the first seven months of this year, with big rises in burglaries and the carrying of weapons. Between January and July there were 102 criminal cases involving 92 illegal immigrants, about 15 crimes a month, up from 11 cases a month last year.