Sixth suspect in famous model Abby Choi Hong Kong murder case granted HK$50,000 bail

The sixth suspect, Lam Shun, arrives at Kowloon City Court on Monday. - Photo: SCMP

HONG KONG, March 6 (South China Morning Post): A 41-year-old man arrested in connection with the gruesome murder of Hong Kong model Abby Choi Tin-fung was on Monday granted bail at HK$50,000 (US$6,410) by a court after prosecutors accused him of trying to help one of the alleged killers flee the city by sea.

Lam Shun, the sixth suspect in the high-profile case, appeared before Kowloon City Court on a charge of assisting an offender with intent to impede his apprehension or prosecution. He was not required to make a plea as the prosecution sought an adjournment for further investigations.

The yacht rental agent was said to have organised the attempted escape of Alex Kwong Kong-chi to Macau on February 24 for a HK$300,000 reward. Kwong allegedly conspired with two family members to kill his 28-year-old ex-wife Choi, who was found dismembered in a village house after going missing, on February 21.

Senior court prosecutor Brian Lai Tak-ki said his side did not object to Lam’s temporary release taking into account the nature of the present offence and the evidence currently available.

He asked that stringent conditions be imposed on the accused, including a “reasonable” amount of cash and a requirement to report to police. He warned that the prosecution’s stance might change if the charge was subsequently upgraded to a more serious one.

Acting Principal Magistrate Peony Wong Nga-yan questioned whether the defendant should be barred from contacting any of the prosecution witnesses, but Lai confirmed the move was unnecessary after consultation with the investigator in charge of the case.

She released Lam on HK$50,000 bail after finding an initial amount of HK$20,000 which he offered to raise for his temporary release was “too small”.

He was barred from leaving the city and ordered to surrender his travel documents, including a notice dated February 23 to collect his renewed Hong Kong passport. He must also report to Tsing Yi Police Station twice a week and tell officers about any change of address.

Kwong, 28, his father Kwong Kau, 65, and brother Anthony Kwong Kong-kit, 31, were earlier charged with murder and remanded in custody.

His 63-year-old mother, Jenny Li Sui-heung, was also detained on a charge of perverting the course of justice for allegedly destroying evidence against her during a police investigation on February 23.

All of those charged will return to Kowloon City Court on May 8.

Abby Choi. - Photo: Instagram/xxabbycAbby Choi. - Photo: Instagram/xxabbyc

Police also arrested a 47-year-old masseuse, identified only by the surname Ng, for allegedly renting an upscale flat in West Kowloon’s Arch Sky Tower development as a temporary shelter for Alex Kwong to evade law enforcement.

She was released on bail without charge, but must report to police later this month.

Assisting an offender with intent to impede his apprehension or prosecution is punishable by up to two years in jail and a HK$5,000 fine if the case is tried before a magistrate. The penalty rises to up to 10 years in prison if the case is heard before a judge and jury.

The offence is deemed less serious than perverting the course of justice, which carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment. Murder carries a mandatory sentence of life in jail.

Police discovered some of socialite Choi’s remains on February 24 in the ground-floor flat of a three-storey house in Tai Po’s Lung Mei Tsuen.

A skull and several ribs believed to be the victim’s were found in one of two large soup pots seized from the property. Two female legs were also found inside a refrigerator in the flat.

Officers from the Kowloon West regional crime squad also conducted a search at a cemetery in Tseung Kwan O and sifted through sewage in the Tai Po village, but did not discover any trace of Choi.

More than 120 officers were also deployed to search for the missing remains of Choi, including her torso and hands, at a New Territories landfill site. They combed through an area about the size of a football pitch to a depth of five metres (16 feet) using excavators and bulldozers but to no avail.

The crime scene in the village remains cordoned off. - South China Morning Post

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Hong , Abby Choi , Sixth Suspect , Bail , Granted


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