High-profile funeral for `James Bond'

Local | Jasmine Siu 30 Dec 2014

President Xi Jinping paid tribute to legendary Hong Kong super spy John Tsang Chao-ko on Sunday at a high- profile funeral that required the attendance of senior Communist Party and government officials.

Tsang, who was once dubbed by the local English press as the James Bond of Hong Kong, was deported from the colonial city in November 1961 following the discovery of an intelligence network he operated to steal and photograph secret colonial government documents for the Chinese central government.

News of the double agent's communist backing made headlines all over the world in the days of the Cold War, and deeply embarrassed the colonial police force as Tsang was one of its youngest and most senior officers.

By the time his double life had unraveled, Tsang was deputy commandant of the Police Training School in Aberdeen at the age of 37.

He was then deported and sent back to his birthplace in Guangzhou, where he began a teaching career as an English professor at Jinan University.

He maintained his political influence as the vice chairman of the Guangdong Provincial People's Congress.

Tsang died from an illness on December 18 at the age of 91. His funeral was held at the Baiyun Hall of the Guangzhou Funeral Home with 200 guests, including 10 family members and his wife Lee Suk-yin.

The Organisation Department and the United Front Work Department of the Communist Party's Central Committee, the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office, as well as the Jinan University in Guangzhou were among those to send representatives to the funeral.

Xi and Politburo Standing Committee member Liu Yunshan sent wreaths and messages of condolences to the late Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference member.

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