The Hong Kong government, which is closely scrutinising the Philippine inquiries into last month's bungled hostage rescue, will soon face scrutiny at home for its own investigation of a police controversy. The High Court announced that it would conduct a judicial review of the investigation into the death of a homeless Nepali man, Dil Bahadur Limbu, who was shot dead by a police officer in March last year. The court agreed to the review after his widow, Sony Rai, alleged bias and missteps by Coroner William Ng Sing-wai, who led the inquest. A jury found Limbu's death to be a 'lawful killing' in May this year. In an application for the review, Rai's lawyer alleged bias by the coroner, arguing that he improperly limited the scope of the inquest and refused to admit pertinent evidence, including a report by a pathologist said to raise questions about the constable's account of the shooting. Rai, who lives in Hong Kong with the couple's young daughter, welcomed the decision, according to her lawyer, Michael Vidler. 'She considers it the first step in getting the justice that she believes is due,' he said. 'She repeats her call for a proper inquest and an independent commission of inquiry to make sure this kind of thing never happens again.' Limbu was shot dead by police constable Hui Ka-ki on a Ho Man Tin hillside on March 17 last year. Hui, who is currently with a Hung Hom-based patrol subunit, said he felt his life was threatened and fired shots after failing to subdue the 30-year-old street sleeper with his baton and pepper spray. Hui said that Limbu attacked him with the legs of a chair when asked to show his Hong Kong identification. After shouting warnings in Cantonese, Hui fired two shots, the second hitting Limbu in the head. It is not clear whether Limbu, who was born in Hong Kong to Nepali parents, understood Hui's warnings. The police shooting and resulting inquest drew significant public scrutiny and highlighted the government's challenges in addressing the needs of the city's minority groups, who took to the streets demanding an apology and fair, independent investigation of the shooting. The inquest into the shooting was fraught with delays, prompting a boycott of proceedings by Rai. Ng was criticised for ordering the case to be heard in Cantonese instead of English, despite opposition from the family. The South China Morning Post reported that the five-member jury heard contradictory interpretations of forensic evidence and the constable's weapons-training record. Hui testified that Limbu punched him in the face, but medical staff at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Yau Ma Tei, who examined Hui, did not record any redness or swelling around the officer's eye. The constable also testified that he shot Limbu after nearly emptying a can of pepper spray, but autopsies did not find any trace of the spray on Limbu. Independent pathologist Beh Swan Lip, a professor at Hong Kong University, testified that the forensic evidence was inconsistent with the police constable's account of events leading up to the shooting, but the coroner refused to allow the jury copies of Beh's report. The jury also heard that Hui had made several errors during police tactical training, including prematurely firing in a training session a month before Limbu was killed. Rai claims that during the inquiry, the coroner refused to order disclosure of police manuals relating to a shooting incident despite her requests. The 76-day inquest concluded on May 25, more than 14 months after the incident. The jury, after concluding that the shooting was a lawful killing, issued no recommendations, which, according to the Department of Justice, 'may be recorded if they are designed to prevent the recurrence of similar fatalities'. Minority rights advocates expressed doubt about the fairness and justice of the hearings and criticised the absence of recommendations about racial and cultural sensitivities. A three-day review of the verdict has been scheduled for January. The Department of Justice will represent Hui and Commissioner of Police Tang King-shing. If the court rules for Rai, it could order a new inquest. And, Vidler said, this judicial review had the potential to change they way inquests were conducted. The news of the judicial review comes as Hong Kong police are actively investigating actions taken by Philippine police in Manila. 'Their approach in the two cases is an interesting,' Vidler said. 'They seem to be very keen on expanding the scope of the Manila inquiry, to get details about the shooting, when they seemed to be preventing us from asking those kind of broader, detailed questions in our case. We would really like the government to express the same sort of eagerness here.'