Police have launched an investigation into a case of sexual harassment during a Christmas party at the Kwun Tong Police Station, the second year in a row that such an incident has been reported.
The case involved assistant district commander Wong Kai-chung, who allegedly wrapped his arms around five female officers and touched their backs inappropriately during a raffle of giveaways at the party on Wednesday last week, Ming Pao Daily News reports.
As Wong was allegedly harassing the female officers both physically and verbally, a male officer tried to intervene but was punched by the official.
Witnesses said Wong had been bullying subordinates during the party, but officers feared that higher-ups would cover up the incident to maintain the “professional image” of the station, Apple Daily reported.
Police investigators are said to be extra careful in verifying complaints against Wong as he is in line for promotion to senior superintendent.
Complaints are sometimes filed against officers to sabotage their promotion, the report said.
In a similar case, another senior officer at the police station became the subject of a sexual harassment complaint.
Rajindarpal Singh Pannu, then a chief inspector, was accused of sending photos of his private parts via phone to female subordinates after last year’s Christmas party.
Following the complaint, Pannu was transferred to another police district and is now awaiting a disciplinary hearing.
A police spokesperson confirmed that complaints had been lodged against Pannu, and the case is still being investigated.
The two cases happened under the watch of Kwun Tong District Commander Barry John Smith.
Smith was originally set to retire last month, but his term was extended up to July next year as the police force is preparing for possible large-scale protests during the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s handover.
Police stressed that the two cases were not related and were not caused by poor management at the police district.
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