Suspected smuggler dies, another rescued after speedboat hit-and-run at sea near Hong Kong

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A suspected smuggler died in hospital on Thursday hours after he and another man fell overboard when their boat was hit by a speedboat and sank in Hong Kong waters.

A police source said the investigation suggested the couple were from mainland China and attempted to smuggle frozen meat from the city to Shenzhen when their 12-meter wooden boat was struck by the other vessel to the north. -west of Lung Kwu Chau Wednesday evening.

The source said a gray speedboat with two men on board did not stop after the collision and sped towards the airport.

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An air and sea rescue operation began around 10:15 p.m. on Wednesday, when a maritime police boat patrolling the area found the couple floating in the water. More than 10 life jackets and several boxes of frozen meat have also been spotted nearby.

According to the force, the operation involved officers from the maritime police and fire departments, as well as the government’s flight service.

Police said two men wearing life jackets were seen floating in the sea and one was screaming for help.

Two officers jumped into the sea and picked up the men, who were then brought aboard the police cruiser.

“One of the two men was unconscious when he was found, and the other was conscious. They were first taken to the Tuen Mun sea base, ”the source said.

The couple were then sent to Tuen Mun Hospital, where the unconscious man, who is believed to be around 60, died shortly after 5 a.m. on Thursday. The other man, 54, was hospitalized.

The source said the 54-year-old was the captain of the wooden boat, and police arrested him on suspicion of endangering the safety of others at sea and of entering the town illegally.

Hong Kong triads reportedly smuggle 1,000 tonnes of meat per day to mainland

In July, the To post reported that gangs controlled by the Hong Kong Triads were behind a massive smuggling operation delivering more than 1,000 tons of frozen meat per day to the mainland using high-powered speedboats.

“Dozens of these boats gather and usually maneuver under the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge at the sea border with mainland China awaiting orders,” a police source said.

“They then cross Hong Kong waters, pick up frozen meat on barges off Lung Kwu Chau, and rush to loading docks minutes away on the mainland.”

He said the illegal maritime trade had prompted local authorities to step up patrols and organize joint operations.

In the first eight months of this year, customs officials confiscated HK $ 480 million worth of luxury goods, frozen meat and other contraband in 52 cross-border maritime smuggling cases. They seized HK $ 490 million in contraband goods in 62 cases over the past year.

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