28th March 2023 – (Hong Kong) An off-duty police officer has been arrested and charged with theft in a case involving Octopus cards and electronic devices worth around HK$27,000. The 26-year-old officer has been suspended from his duties and was brought before the Tuen Mun Magistrates’ Court for his first hearing on 28th March 2023.
The incident occurred on 26th November last year when a 31-year-old man reported to the police that he had left his backpack on a bus traveling from Causeway Bay to Tin Shui Wai around 3am on the same day. The man later found his backpack in a planter box on Tin Yiu Road in Tin Shui Wai, but three Octopus cards and electronic devices, including a laptop and a tablet, worth around HK$27,000, were missing.
After conducting an investigation, the police discovered that the three Octopus cards were used for unauthorised transactions totalling around HK$770 between 26th November and 28th November. On 29th November at 5.25am, the police arrested a 26-year-old male suspect in the area on suspicion of theft and recovered some of the stolen items. To the surprise of the authorities, the suspect turned out to be an off-duty police officer.
After seeking legal advice, the police charged the off-duty officer with five counts of theft. During the first hearing at Tuen Mun Magistrates’ Courts today, the defence team requested time to obtain documents to provide further legal advice, and the case has been adjourned until 23rd May. In the meantime, the accused has been granted bail of HK$2,000 in cash.