5 nabbed after bungled robbery

Local | Charlotte Luo 3 Sep 2019

Five suspects, aged 16 to 33, were arrested shortly after allegedly bungling a robbery at a watch shop in Sham Shui Po, police said yesterday.

The suspects, who were armed with three knives and a hammer, tried to use the weapons to break the shop's glass door on Cheung Sha Wan Road, but failed.

Inspector Tse Yau-him, of the Sham Shui Po District Crime Squad, said the attempted robbery occurred at about 2.17pm on Sunday, when four men exited a white private car parked outside the watch shop. The quartet tried to smash the locked glass door with the watermelon knives. Failing to do so, they were seen fleeing in the private car driven by a fifth man.

One of the shop's employees called police, while several others stood guard with wooden sticks, a source said.

Police checked surveillance camera footage outside the shop in order to identify the car, the source said. The dashcam of a car passing by recorded the robbers fleeing the scene.

The video showed the four thieves, who were wearing baseball caps, getting into a white private car. As the car drove away, two men holding wooden sticks - believed to be employees at the watch shop - chased after it. Tse said the white car was spotted on Tolo Highway heading toward Fan Ling at about 2.30pm.

Police gave chase, and the getaway car came to a halt after slamming into a railing near Kwu Tung in Sheung Shui.

The five men exited the vehicle and attempted to flee, but police officers brandishing guns arrested them, Tse said.

Police found three watermelon knives, one hammer, and two bottles of paint thinner inside the car. A probe by the Regional Crime Unit's Sham Shui Po Division is under way.

The watch shop closed after the attempted robbery, as police officers conducted an investigation inside. Brand new and second-hand luxury watches, including Rolexes and items from Panerai, were in the display window.

Scratch marks from the watermelon knives were visible on the glass door.

According to the Transport Department's records, the private car used for the robbery attempt was registered to a local man surnamed Sham.

Police are investigating the relationship between those arrested and Sham.

The five were arrested on suspicion of attempted robbery, while the driver was also arrested for dangerous driving.


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