30th March 2023 – (Hong Kong) A former senior constable in Hong Kong has been sentenced to seven days in jail for pushing a merchant during a road rage incident that ultimately led to the victim’s death. Kwong Tak-wing, aged 58, was cleared of the more severe charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, but was found guilty of common assault by the Tuen Mun Magistrates’ Courts. However, since Kwong had already been held in custody for 52 days, he was released immediately.
The court found that while there was no evidence suggesting that Kwong had intended to cause substantial harm to Berry Chan Kwok-leung, he had intentionally pushed Chan in the chest with hostile intent during the altercation that occurred on 28th November, 2021.
Chan’s wife expressed her disappointment in the verdict, calling it “unfair” and stating that the retired officer had not apologized to her family or attempted to make amends for the incident. The case has sparked renewed debate around the issue of police misconduct and accountability in Hong Kong.
The incident took place when Kwong and Chan were involved in a traffic dispute in Tuen Mun, a district in the New Territories of Hong Kong. Witnesses reported that the altercation became physical, and Kwong pushed Chan to the ground, causing him to hit his head on the pavement.
Chan was immediately rushed to the hospital with a severe head injury and was placed in a medically induced coma. He passed away three days later due to the severity of his injuries. Initially, Kwong was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm, but the charge was later downgraded to common assault.
During the trial, Kwong’s defence claimed that he had acted in self-defence and that Chan had been the aggressor in the altercation. However, the court rejected this argument and found Kwong guilty of common assault.