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Triad course an 'eye-opener'

D C&S Louis Lau and ACP C Gordon Fung (front row, centre) with students and lecturers of the triad course

Participants in the recent Sixth Triad Course for Overseas Law Enforcement Officers hailed it as an informative and valuable tool for fighting the international influence of Chinese secret societies.
The presentation ran from October 25 to November 5 at the Police Officers' Club with 14 participants from Australia, Japan, Thailand, Holland, the United Kingdom, South Africa, Germany, the United States and for the first time South Korea, taking part.
The course has been growing in popularity each year, with more than 20 applications being lodged for the latest round.
Lecturer, Criminal Intelligence Bureau Chief Inspector Peter Ip Pau-fuk said: "These officers may not necessarily have a triad problem in their countries, but they are here to enrich their knowledge of triads and to learn how the Force is tackling them. Through these seminars we can also cultivate a good network and friendship with overseas police forces to co-operate and exchange information."
The course also featured several other lecturers, including Dr Chu Yiu-kong of the Hong Kong University's Sociology Department.
Participants took part in discussions and field trips to the Detective Training School, Police Museum and several Chinese temples. The course looked at history, ceremonies, rank structure, rituals, myths and legends, poems, slogans, gestures and related activities of the different triad societies in Hong Kong.
Discussions were also held on the organised crime and triad activities being encountered by police overseas.
Illegal immigration and snakeheads were hot topics during the course with both Australian and Japanese officers bringing up the subject.
Roland Singor of the Australian Federal Police National Strike Team said the course was especially useful to help the country in its war against drug trafficking. "Southeast Asia is the main source of heroin into Australia and we are here to learn about triads and get a better understanding of how they operate in our country. The whole package of this course has been a real eye-opener, learning about the extent of the triad influence. Australian authorities are really tackling this problem head-on with a lot of people learning Asian languages and culture. We will use the experience of this course to help us in our investigations," Mr Singor said.
The course formally closed on November 5 with Director of Crime and Security Louis Lau Chun-sing and Assistant Commissioner of Police (Crime) Gordon Fung Siu-yuen officiating at the ceremony in Caine House.

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