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Crime in Hong Kong

Woman suffers serious injuries after Hong Kong acid attack at busy Tsim Sha Tsui restaurant

Police called to Tsim Tung Ho Choi Seafood Restaurant on Mody Road after man attacks his wife with corrosive drain cleaner

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 27 May, 2018, 2:27pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 27 May, 2018, 11:31pm

Seven people were injured at a busy Hong Kong restaurant on Sunday when a man attacked his wife with corrosive drain cleaner.

The 40-year-old woman, who is a restaurant employee, was rushed to Prince of Wales Hospital in Sha Tin after suffering injuries to her head, hands, and feet, and is listed in a serious condition.

The lunchtime attack took place at Tsim Tung Ho Choi Seafood Restaurant on Mody Road in the bustling tourist district of Tsim Sha Tsui, after the 40-year-old man, surnamed He, is believed to have attacked his wife with the substance, before being restrained by onlookers and restaurant employees.

The name Ho Choi means lucky in Cantonese.

Three other employees, and two customers aged 38 to 66, sustained injuries to their hands, feet or faces in the incident, a police spokesman said. The attacker was also injured.

He was arrested on suspicion of wounding, and was taken in handcuffs to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Yau Ma Tei for treatment, where he is in a stable condition after sustaining injuries to his chest and hands.

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The other five victims were also sent to Queen Elizabeth Hospital. Four were later discharged, while a 38-year-old employee is in a stable condition.

At least two of the injured were seen being carried on stretchers to ambulances, while the rest were treated by paramedics at the scene.

Police were investigating the motive for the attack, including whether it involved a domestic dispute.

Six tables – some with unfinished dishes – were cordoned off in a corner of the restaurant following the incident, while officers from the police forensics team gathered evidence. Splashes of fluid could be seen on the ground.

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Among the witnesses was a man in his 60s who gave his surname as Chan. He said he was a regular visitor to the restaurant.

He heard a scream and saw a young female employee covering her face with her hand, he said. A man in his 40s wearing a pair of sunglasses stood beside her after splashing the fluid.

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“Staff escorted the woman to another room while the man was soon restrained by other people,” Chan said. “I come here regularly, but it was the first time I had seen this woman.”

Chan said police officers arrived about three minutes after the incident took place.

He said the woman had been screaming after the attack, and had to be escorted to the washroom to be treated with fresh water. The suspect meanwhile appeared “calm” and did not try to escape, he said.

“I heard him say: ‘Just let her die,’ when someone talked to him after the attack,” Chan said.

A few holes, believed to be caused by the corrosive liquid, could be seen on the cover of a chair, while an empty bottle with a label of a coffee brand was found on the ground. The bottle was believed by witnesses to have contained the corrosive liquid.

The restaurant resumed business at 1.15pm, with long queues outside.