A jobless man in Hong Kong accused of robbing two taxi drivers of HK$7,200 (US$927) in total at knifepoint in two separate cases a fortnight ago was arrested on Thursday night after officers identified him from security camera footage.
Police said the 25-year-old suspect deployed a crafty escape plan to avoid detection in both the robberies that happened in Wan Chai and Western district.
“Our investigation revealed that the robber changed clothes and took several taxi trips to avoid being tracked down by police after the hold-ups,” Senior Inspector Hung Yu-yan of the Wan Chai district crime squad said.
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She said that in each of the cases, the man posed as a passenger to get in the taxi, threatened its driver with a box cutter and ordered the cabby to hand over money when it reached a quiet location.
Hung said the investigation showed the suspect worked alone at night in both cases.
The first hold-up happened shortly after 3am on April 14 when the taxi the suspect was travelling in reached Kennedy Road in Wan Chai. The driver, 62, was robbed of HK$6,900 when he was threatened with a weapon.
The suspect struck again the next day when he robbed another taxi driver, 59, of HK$300 on Victoria Road in Western district shortly before 11pm.
Police said no one was injured in either case.
After examining security footage, officers lay in wait at Wah Fu Estate in Pok Fu Lam on Thursday evening and intercepted him when he showed up at around 8pm.
Two taxi drivers robbed in 45 minutes as one man asks for directions while another snatches bag from the back
In a follow-up raid on his flat in the estate, police seized clothes and sports shoes the suspect was wearing in the robberies.
As of 11am on Friday, the man was still being held for questioning and had not been charged.
Hung appealed to taxi drivers, especially those working on night shifts, not to keep a lot of money and valuables in their vehicles.
In 2020, police handled 264 reports of robbery across the city, up 25.7 per cent from 210 cases the year before.
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