A retired government nurse was arrested after he tried to start a fire at the Justice Place in Central, a government complex where Secretary for Justice Teresa Cheng Yeuk-wah holds office.
The incident took place sometime after 3 p.m. Tuesday, when a man, said to be in his 70s, barged into the office of the Civil Litigation Unit of the Department of Justice’s Civil Division on the sixth floor in the east wing of the complex on Lower Albert Road, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
The man then hurled a bottle of flammable liquid at a reception area and soon after tried to ignite it with a lighter, a source was quoted as saying.
Fortunately, a security guard stationed in the area was able to subdue the man and prevent him from carrying out his plan.
Police arrived later and arrested the man for attempted arson. He was sent to Queen Mary Hospital for treatment of hand injuries.
Cheng did not answer questions about the incident when reporters approached her as she was leaving her office in the main wing of the complex.
A Department of Justice spokesperson only said police were handling the case.
It is understood that the man used to be a registered nurse of the Hospital Authority before he retired in 1999.
According to a source, he tried to set the building fire because the Civil Service Bureau had ordered deductions from his HK$13,000 monthly pension after he filed for personal bankruptcy due to his inability to repay gambling debts.
The man is said to have sent intimidating emails to the bureau and was consequently placed under probation by a court.
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