More details have surfaced on the controversial editing of a voice-over on a video clip showing a protester being beaten up by police officers at Tamar Park in Admiralty.
A recording of the conversation believed to be between Television Broadcasts Ltd. (TVB) news director Keith Yuen Chi-wai and the reporter who did the voice-over, which was widely circulated on the internet, indicated that Yuen was concerned about the gravity of the allegations and their impact on the police officers involved in the incident.
In the recording, Yuen said he first heard the voice-over at home early Wednesday morning, Ming Pao Daily reported.
The voice-over said social worker and Civic Party member Ken Tsang Kin-chiu, one of the pro-democracy protesters on Lung Wo Road, was “placed on the ground, and then punched and kicked” by police officers in a dark corner near Tamar Park.
The voice-over was used in a live broadcast of the video clip on the network, the report said.
Yuen called back the office at around 6:35 a.m. demanding that the voice-over be edited before the news program Good Morning Hong Kong started airing.
“It’s very serious as police officers involved could face life imprisonment. We have to be careful in handling the report which involves legal suits,” he said in the recording.
The editor also questioned the wordings of the voice-over. “How did you know policemen dragged him to a dark corner and beaten him?” Yuen asked in the recording.
He said the information that they were police officers should first be verified. “If you did not verify, we should use words like ‘suspect’, ‘we believe’,” he said.
“As the chief editor, I have to take responsibility for each word and have to edit it,” he added.
The original references were removed in the news broadcast from 7 a.m. onwards, according to the newspaper.
After 12 noon, a different phrase — “the police are suspected of having used violence against him” — was inserted, the report said.
Staff of the TVB news department have issued a joint statement voicing their displeasure over the editing of the video report.
The seven police officers who figured in the incident have been suspended, and a criminal investigation is being conducted.
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