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Suspect in Wild Hong Kong Car Chase May Be Connected to Burglary Ring, Authorities Say

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A man who was shot by police after a wild car chase in Hong Kong Thursday may have been connected to a burglary ring that targeted smart phone vendors and retail shops, according to authorities.

The 45-year-old man, who was identified by police with the last name Hung, was arrested Saturday along with three other men and two women in connection to a string of robberies that occurred over the past two months, the South China Morning Post reported.

Police alleged that the group conducted three burglaries in the New Territories region of Hong Kong, and stole a total of $42,426 worth of cash and goods, including 78 smartphones and tablet computers.

“In the past two months, police were notified of three burglary cases reported in Tuen Mun and Sheung Shui using similar tactics, involving break-ins at retail shops around midnight. The thieves mainly targeted stores selling smartphones in shopping malls,” Chief Inspector Tsui Ka-wing from the New Territories North regional crime unit said at a press briefing, the Post reported.

Hong Kong police said a man who led authorities on a wild car chase Thursday may have been connected to a string of burglaries. Here, police stand guard in Hong Kong on April 7, 2021.
ANTHONY WALLACE/Getty Images

The suspects reportedly used tools to break the locks of retail shops at night, and later fled in vehicles with fake license plates. Police alleged that the group then stored the stolen items at a second-hand store.

The new discovery comes days after Hung led police on a three-mile, six-minute car chase throughout Sha Tin, in which he sped through four red lights and crashed into a bus, two private cars, two taxis, and a police vehicle.

The chase first began after traffic police discovered that the suspect’s vehicle had a license plate that expired in 2015. But when police ordered the vehicle to stop, Hung sped off in the opposite direction of traffic. Authorities later found burglary tools in the vehicle, including hammers, gloves and pliers.

A widely circulated video from the dash-cam of a nearby taxi captured the end of the car chase, in which Hung attempted to squeeze out of tightly controlled traffic while a police officer aimed a loaded gun at his car.

Eventually, the car came to a halt and the officer was seen smashing the vehicle’s window with a baton. At the same time, another officer out of frame opened fire, striking Hung’s shoulder.

“We tried to stop the car … but the driver continued his escape, refused to open the door and hit more cars,” Chief Inspector Ng Tak-nam from the New Territories South regional crime squad, told the outlet.

“Even when his car was trapped [on Ngan Shing Street], he continued to smash into other vehicles. We think that pulling the gun in such a situation is lawful and reasonable,” he added.

Hung was then sent for treatment at Prince of Wales Hospital following the shooting. The suspect’s 37-year-old girlfriend and a two-year-old child, who were also in the car, were not hurt, the Post reported.

On top of his suspected burglary connection, Hung has been arrested and charged with at least six offenses, including dangerous driving, furious driving, and driving without a valid license.

The Liberty Buzz contacted Hong Kong police for additional comment, but did not hear back in time for publication.

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