Senior Hong Kong policeman ‘assaulted colleagues trying to stop him harassing female inspector’ at Christmas party
Magistrate rules superintendent has case to answer over alleged incidents at senior officers’ event two years ago
A Hong Kong police superintendent was on Thursday accused of assaulting two colleagues who were allegedly trying to stop him harassing a female inspector at a senior officers’ Christmas party.
Superintendent Martin Wong Kai-chung, 49, was to present his defence on Friday following Deputy Magistrate Andrew Mok Tsz-chung’s ruling that he had a case to answer on two counts of common assault, which he had denied.
Kwun Tong Court heard the alleged assaults took place at the Officers’ Mess at Lei Yue Mun Road on December 14, 2016, when some 40 officers – all ranked inspector or above – and a few clerical staff gathered for games, lucky draws, drinking and a buffet.
Prosecutors alleged Wong assaulted Senior Inspector Paddy Cheung Siu-long and Inspector Yvonne Cheng Yuen-man at the party.
Cheng testified that she was chatting with Wong when she noticed he had put his right arm around Inspector Yuki Yan Ho-yin’s waist. She said Yan looked surprised and apparently tried to wriggle out of Wong’s grip before he released his hand, only to slap Yan twice in the back.
“Yan looked scared. Her eyes glistened,” Cheng said.
Cheung, who also testified to seeing Wong slap Yan’s back, said he approached the group when he saw Wong moved his arm again as though he wanted to hit Yan for a second time.
“I saw that Yan was withdrawing her body … like she was trying to evade the defendant’s movements,” the senior inspector continued. The thought prompted him to stand between the two, he said.
Cheung said Wong then raised his right hand to slap his back twice and assaulted Inspector Anson Lam Ho-wa twice in the abdomen with his other hand.
“Immediately my back felt a pricking pain,” he testified.
But Lam, on the other hand, testified that Wong patted Yan’s back after Chief Inspector Wilkie Ng Wai-kei commented that she had gone to the party despite being on duty afterwards.
Lam said Wong then patted Lam’s chest twice when he reported that he too would be returning to the office after the party.
“I believe he was showing his acknowledgement and appreciation,” Lam said. “It’s simple social body language.”
Yan said a tipsy Wong had put his arm around her but that he only touched her jacket and not her body – in a move she interpreted as “social contact”.
She could not recall if Wong had commented that she was hard-working when he touched her back. Instead she testified that he patted her with “great force” when she asked if he was drinking, to which he replied yes.
“It felt very strange when he hit me,” Yan said.
Cheng, who claimed that she had been the one to pull Yan away from the group, further testified that Wong later punched her in the stomach when she was on her way to collect a lucky draw prize.
“I was dumbstruck. My stomach experienced a severe pain,” she said.
But defence counsel Osmond Lam countered the touch had been accidental. “I disagree. I disagree,” Cheng replied.
Both Cheung and Yan testified to hearing a “bang” at the time of the alleged assault on Cheng.
Cheng denied reporting Wong, revealing instead that it was her direct supervisor who informed her the next morning that he had asked for a follow-up on the incident.
The trial continues.