Eighty kilograms of illegal fireworks and firecrackers thought to have been smuggled into Hong Kong from mainland China for Lunar New Year were seized by police on Tuesday from a shipping container on a remote hillside.
The haul had an estimated street value of HK$50,000 (US$6,434) and would probably have been sold illegally for the celebrations, Senior Inspector Lee Ka-wing of the anti-triad squad of Yuen Long police district said.
He said the consignment was found hidden in the container on a hillside off Deep Bay Road, Lau Fau Shan, in the early hours of Tuesday. No one was arrested at the scene.
“Simplified Chinese characters were found on the packaging. We don’t rule out the possibility it was smuggled from mainland China,” Lee said, adding arrests were possible.
Police were investigating how the container got into the city and who owned it.
In the run-up to the Lunar New Year festival, police would continue to carry out intelligence-led operations to fight such illegal activities, the officer said.
In Hong Kong, some villagers, especially elderly people, believe setting off fireworks will bring them good luck, health, and wealth.
Illegal possession or discharge of fireworks and firecrackers carries a maximum penalty of six months in jail and a HK$25,000 fine under the Dangerous Goods Ordinance.