A 90-year-old street performer is pining after the pet monkey with which he entertained crowds was taken away from him by government officials. Chan Yat-biu earned pin money by taking Kam Ying, a rhesus macaque he hand-reared from a baby four years ago, around Mongkok and Kowloon. But after a complaint from a member of the public, officials from the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department seized the animal during a performance in Kowloon. Officials said it was illegal to keep a monkey and that they would not allow Mr Chan to have it back. Instead, it will probably be sent to a zoo. His son Chan Yiu-wing said yesterday: 'My dad is getting thinner and thinner since this happened. He can't sleep since losing his old friend. He visited Kam Ying [in the department's Sheung Shui Animal Management Centre] this morning. He is very sad and tired.' Mr Chan said his father had performed with monkeys since the early 1950s. 'Everyone loves his show,' he said, adding that the family's livelihood depended heavily on the money received from selling traditional Chinese medicine made by his father and promoted during the show. He said Kam Ying was not the first monkey that his father had raised, but it was the one he had loved most. The department said Mr Chan would not face charges because of his age and health. 'We seized the monkey under the Animals and Plants [Protection of Endangered Species] Ordinance,' a department spokesman said. Under the ordinance, keeping a monkey carries a maximum penalty of a $100,000 fine and one year's jail. Talk show host Albert Cheng King-hon accused the Government of being inhuman by parting the old man and his pet. 'The department has agreed that the monkey could not survive in the wild and that it was well cared for by Mr Chan. The Government is neglecting the welfare of an old man,' he said. He has launched a signature campaign on his Web site - www.36.com - and radio phone-in programme to muster support for Mr Chan's reunion with his pet.