Teacher claiming right eye hit by rubber bullet chases raptors

Top News | Jane Cheung 13 Sep 2019

A teacher whose right eye was hit by a suspected rubber bullet on June 12 filed a writ to the High Court against police "raptor" teams for not displaying their staff number on their uniform.

This comes as a woman whose right eye was ruptured by a suspected beanbag round in a Tsim Sha Tsui protest challenged police in court for obtaining her medical records against her will.

In the first case, a liberal studies teacher at Diocesan Girls' School filed the writ to the High Court yesterday against Police Commissioner Stephen Lo Wai-chung.

Yeung Tsz-chun said Lo's decision to hide staff numbers of special tactical teams - known as raptors - was against the Hong Kong Bill of Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Yeung wants the court to quash the decision and order all raptor team members to display their numbers on their uniforms.

He also accused police of using excessive and unlawful force.

"The applicant had a glimpse of an object flying at him from the direction of the [special tactical contingent] officers," the writ said. "Upon feeling pain in his right eye and chest, the applicant realized that he had been shot."

In the second case, High Court Justice Godfrey Lam Wan-ho said he would hand down a ruling in two days, after a hearing yesterday.

Police said the woman who was injured on August 11 refused to make statements about her condition, so they secured a court warrant to obtain her medical records from the Hospital Authority to investigate what caused her eye injury.

Senior counsel Robert Pang Yiu-hung, lawyer for the woman - referred to as K in court - said he had repeatedly sent letters to police asking to see the warrant to challenge its validity. But police ignored his requests and failed to provide him with the relevant documents, he added.

Pang said this breached Article 35 of the Basic Law, which gives people the right to judicial remedies and to challenge legal proceedings.

He cited the SAR law that police can only apply for court warrants to obtain additional information when it suspects a crime has been committed. But in this case, Pang added, police cannot tell what offenses K had allegedly committed.

Senior counsel Charlotte Draycott representing police said K's objection came too late and there is nothing she could do to change the fact that police have obtained her medical report.

K, who is still recovering from her injuries, did not appear in court yesterday but her younger sister sat at the public gallery.

The courtroom was filled with her supporters dressed in black, who spilled to the lobbies of the High Court to watch livestreaming of the hearing.

Meanwhile, Hong Kong Baptist University student union head Keith Fong Chung-yin filed a writ at District Court demanding compensation from police.

He alleged he was beaten after his arrest last month for possession of offensive weapons after officers saw him purchasing 10 laser pens in Sham Shui Po.

jane.cheung@singtaonewscorp.com

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