A retired man accused of biting off part of a district councillor’s ear over the weekend has been charged with malicious assault in a Hong Kong court.
But Joe Chen, 48 – who also allegedly wounded two others in the same attack – did not appear in Eastern Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday as he was undergoing treatment at Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital in Chai Wan.
On Sunday evening, a man was captured on a video clip biting off the left ear of Taikoo Shing West district councillor Andrew Chiu Ka-yin outside the Cityplaza mall in the neighbourhood. He also attacked a few others with a knife before he was caught and beaten up.
Prosecutors on Tuesday charged Chen with one count of causing grievous bodily harm on Chiu with intent on November 3. He has been accused of “unlawfully and maliciously” assaulting Chiu.
He also faced two extra counts of wounding Louis Wan Ho-lun and Leung Pik-kei with intent. Both offences carry a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.
Chen has been transferred out of the intensive care unit at the hospital, where he was admitted with injuries. But he was not yet fit enough to make a statement, the South China Morning Post has learned.
He is expected to be brought to the court on Friday if he is discharged by then.
Separately, a teacher, Chung Wing-yee, 25, was also brought to Eastern Court to face charges of rioting, wounding with intent, and using face coverings at an unauthorised assembly, over the attack on a taxi driver during an anti-government protest on October 6.
She has been accused of wounding Cheng Kwok-chuen at the junction of Yen Chow Street and Cheung Sha Wan Roan in Sham Shui Po in what prosecutors have described as a riot.
She was granted a cash bail of HK$3,000 (US$382) and was ordered not to leave Hong Kong until her next hearing on January 8.
Meanwhile, defence lawyers and prosecutors were locked in an argument, a day after more than a hundred armed police officers took to the court in Sai Wan Ho to make arrests in a rare court drama triggered by a clerical mistake by the Department of Justice.
Police had to rearrest three of the five defendants, accused of possessing an explosive substance, who had to be released by the court on Monday because of an invalid document.
While it could amount to a contemptuous act if police made the arrests inside the court building without the judiciary’s approval, the saga ended with the defendants surrendering outside the building.
Yet their defence lawyers complained on Tuesday that police officers had carried firearms into the lobby of the court premises with an intent to make arrests.
Senior public prosecutor Ivan Cheung Cheuk-kan hit back: “There is no impropriety if there is such a suggestion of contemptuous act of police action in making arrests.”
He added the ground floor of the building was not used exclusively by the judiciary, but was a common area shared with other government departments as well.
At Sha Tin Court, bank manager Ho Kai-sin, 31, was given 80 hours of community service and fined HK$4,000 for jamming traffic on a highway connecting Tuen Mun during a citywide strike on August 5 as part of the anti-government movement which started on June 9 in opposition to the now-withdrawn extradition bill.
At Kwun Tong Court, clerk Ng Yat-kan, 30, was charged with one count of assaulting a police officer, identified as A, by spraying water on him using a fire hosepipe outside Sheung Tak Estate bus terminal in Tseung Kwan O on November 4. Another person, merchant Tse Wing-ling, 51, was charged with assaulting two other constables outside Tong Ming Street Park.
Acting principal magistrate Ivy Chui Yee-mei questioned the need to cover the officers’ identities before granting the two bail.
More from South China Morning Post:
- Hong Kong surgeons reattach part of district councillor Andrew Chiu’s ear, bitten off by knifeman near Cityplaza mall
- Hong Kong man threw acid on estranged partner at restaurant suspecting her of cheating, court hears
- District councillors snub meeting with Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam with only about one in five attending
- Hundreds of supporters turn out at Hong Kong court as three anti-government protesters face charges of rioting and assaulting police officers
This article Man accused of biting ear off Hong Kong district councillor charged with malicious assault first appeared on South China Morning Post