Hong Kong police have confirmed a complaint against a chief inspector, who allegedly sent suggestive photos to a subordinate last year. The force also said it would look into another allegation – revealed by the Ming Pao newspaper – that a commander indecently assaulted several female officers at a party last week.
Ming Pao reported on Monday that then-chief inspector Rajindarpal Singh Pannu sent several photos of his genitals and naked women to a subordinate in what he claimed to be a drunken state. He later called the officer to check if she had received the photos. The officer replied at the time that she was driving.
The officer subsequently filed a complaint against Pannu. The paper alleged that the management decided to launch an internal – rather than criminal – investigation, probably in an effort to conceal the incident.
A spokesperson for the force confirmed that it had received the relevant complaints and was investigating the matter. It declined to give further comment.
Ming Pao cited sources as saying that the police had obtained legal advice from the Department of Justice and would be holding a disciplinary hearing against Pannu. If the allegation was substantiated, the inspector might face demotion as a punishment. Pannu’s office did not answer Ming Pao’s phone calls on Sunday.
Pannu, who worked in the Kwun Tong district, previously told Ming Pao that his father and grandfather both served in the force, and said he hoped his children would become police officers.
Another allegation involves Assistant Commander (Crime) in the same district, Wong Kai-chung. Ming Pao revealed on Sunday that Wong held the waists and brushed the backs of five female officers at a Christmas party in the Kwun Tong Police Station last week. The paper said that some of the officers were visibly upset at Wong’s advances.
A male officer tried to stop Wong but was punched. Wong then tried to pat a female officer before being taken away from the venue.
The commander also allegedly described the officers as having “long legs” and wearing “super short skirts” while facilitating a lucky draw.
The party, with alcoholic drinks, was attended by around 40 officers. Wong’s office did not answer Ming Pao’s phone calls on Sunday.
Sources in the force told the paper that the two incidents were isolated cases and unrelated to management issues. A police spokesperson also said that the force takes police misconduct seriously.
Wong is scheduled to be considered for promotion, according to Ming Pao. Senior officer Tang Ping-keung, who according to press speculation will become Hong Kong’s next police commissioner, is the chair of the selection committee.