A Mainland man, 25, has been jailed three years and 10 months for handling stolen Buddhist pine trees.
He was sentenced today at the District Court after being convicted of handling stolen goods and assisting the passage to Hong Kong of unauthorised entrants. Another 18-year-old man was repatriated to the Mainland on August 23.
On March 13 Marine Police intercepted a vessel off Tai Long Tsui and found the pair with 14 uprooted Buddhist pine trees aboard their craft. The 25-year-old said he was employed on the Mainland to sail the vessel to Po Toi to collect the trees and deliver them to Nanao.
He said five or six unknown Mainlanders loaded the trees onto his vessel, which later ran out of fuel and drifted at sea at the time of the Police interception.
The estimated value of the stolen trees was about $100,000.