A Hongkonger detained on suspicion of smuggling while travelling on the mega bridge to Macau has said in an interview he was released on bail because he had cancer, and praised mainland officers for being polite to him.
But the Post could not independently verify if the man interviewed was Chung Sun-ming, 53, who was held on December 13 by Zhuhai police and customs, and accused of smuggling mobile phones in August 2012.
The interview was published in Huanqiu, a website run by Global Times, a tabloid affiliated with the Communist Party-run People’s Daily, and Huanqiu said the man was surnamed Chan, 49.
He was reportedly detained on December 14, and was interviewed in a garden in Zhuhai on Thursday.
“My surname is Chan, I am a Hong Kong resident. After lunch on December 14, I was travelling to Macau to go gambling,” the man said.
“After passing through the Hong Kong checkpoint, I arrived at the artificial island for security check. But I could not get through and was caught by mainland [police] officers.”
Chan was referring to a new security checkpoint manned by mainland officials on the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge.
Security on the world’s longest sea crossing had been tightened ahead of President Xi Jinping’s visit this week to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the casino hub’s handover to China.
Zhuhai public security bureau established a new mainland checkpoint on an artificial island linked to the bridge to “create a good social environment” for the celebrations.
The man said in the interview he had been accused of smuggling.
“I was taken to the anti-smuggling bureau of the mainland customs, where I told the officer that I have cancer. I signed all the papers so that I could be released on bail for medical treatment,” he said.
“There was no so-called bad attitude [from the officers], in fact their attitude was good and they deserved to be praised.”
The man also said he contacted his wife, his son and his brother after being released at night, and they went to Zhuhai to meet him the next day.
It was previously reported that Chung’s family contacted Hong Kong police on Saturday and said he had disappeared after travelling on a bus along the bridge. Chung was wanted by customs in Shenzhen, according to the Guangdong provincial public security department.