Officers are hoping to avoid a repeat of clashes in Yuen Long four years ago Police will step up patrols in rural areas in the run-up to the forthcoming elections for village representatives to avoid a repeat of triad violence that plagued the previous poll in Yuen Long four years ago.' Uniformed and plainclothes officers will also be deployed to keep a watch on the new 'two heads' elections, which will be held between July 8 and August 12. Police are currently investigating four alleged reports - three wounding cases and one of criminal damage - involving four men who will stand in the village elections. Two of them are now serving as village representatives. So far, seven people have been arrested in connection with two of the four cases. The Yuen Long elections four years ago were marred by a petrol bombing, an alleged kidnapping and numerous acts of intimidation. In March 1999, up to 500 suspected members of the 14K triad society arrived in trucks outside the Yuen Long District Office during the election of the Ping Shan Rural Committee chairman. They left after being checked by police and no one was arrested. In a separate incident, a village head was allegedly kidnapped to keep him from attending the election and more than 40 village representatives reportedly stayed away from their homes to avoid trouble. Superintendent Tony Deakin of the New Territories North regional crime unit said police would investigate any possible election-linked illegal activities. 'At the same time, we will explain to villagers what is permitted under the election rules,' he said. Police will get the message across by distributing leaflets and visiting villages. Mr Deakin said any election-linked crime or triad activity would be investigated and the Independent Commission Against Corruption would investigate any election-linked bribery. Chief Inspector Yeung Chi-choi of the New Territories North anti-triad unit said: 'Police will adopt zero tolerance to any election-linked violence or triad activities, and we will ensure that there will be fair and open elections.' The two-heads system will see indigenous villagers - those who trace their roots back to 1898 - elect one representative, while the entire village population will choose another.