Chinese motorcyclist refuses to believe man in swimming trunks is a police officer

Stopped for not wearing a helmet, his companion films incident and posts it online – prompting police to explain the officer was on a plain-clothes mission

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 22 July, 2018, 7:48pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 22 July, 2018, 7:48pm

A county police department in southern China has confirmed on social media that one of its officers was indeed on duty in a pair of swimming trunks on Tuesday.

The unusual statement came after a plain-clothes policeman, wearing only a pair of tight swimming trunks, stopped a motorcyclist in his 20s for riding without a helmet that day.

He had been travelling with a woman along a quiet road by a river in the county of Xishui, Guizhou province – but they were unconvinced that the man in trunks was actually an officer.

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Footage of the incident posted on social media – which appears to have been filmed by the woman on the back of the motorbike and has been confirmed by police – shows the officer producing his police ID when questioned. The motorcyclist still does not believe him, and asks where his uniform is and whether he is on duty.

The man is also heard in the video clip daring the bare-chested policeman to fine him.

But having handed over his motorbike licence, he is made to call a relative to bring him a helmet before he can continue on his way.

The next day, the county police confirmed on their official social media account that Shui Wenchao had been on a plain-clothes mission when he stopped the motorcyclist.

Shui told West China Metropolis Daily on Thursday that he had been investigating illegal fishing activities in the river.

“We’d received a tip-off that there were people fishing illegally in the river … but if we had turned up in uniform, we would never have caught them,” Shui told the newspaper.

“So we brought our swimming trunks and stripped off, pretending we were just going for a dip in the river.”

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He stayed in the area with colleagues until midnight on Tuesday, eventually arresting three suspects for illegal fishing, according to the report.

Shui added that he had not intended to fine the motorcyclist, he just wanted to make sure he was wearing a helmet.