Three students from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology were arrested for stealing bamboos used as scaffolding at a construction site near the campus in Clear Water Bay, Sai Kung.
The students, identified by their surnames Tsang (18), Kei (18) and Lam (19), said they needed the bamboo poles for the flags they would use in a campus event, Apple Daily reported.
The event was part of the activities being organized by the HKUST chemistry association, of which they are members.
Police said the students went to a construction site about 300 meters from their hostel in Tai Po Tsai Village early Monday morning and tried to haul away several bamboo poles.
Alerted by the noise they were making, the security guard at the site called the police and chased the students.
The students were later arrested and taken to the police station.
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