‘Chinese police car’ tracked down in Australia
Police have tracked down a BMW that appeared to be masquerading as a Chinese police vehicle, at a time of simmering tensions between pro-Hong Kong protesters and Chinese patriots.
The Advertiser revealed on Sunday that police were investigating after pictures emerged of a car parked on Grote St, city, with Chinese characters and designs painted on it - patterns that matched Beijing police cars pictured in Tiananmen Square in recent times.
As protests continued in Hong Kong and Adelaide over proposals to extradite suspected criminals from Hong Kong to China, some people were worried the car was intended to intimidate them.
Similarly decorated cars have been spotted in Perth and Melbourne.
But decals available online for about $10 mimic the police characters, so it may have been a joke. It is an offence to impersonate police.
Police would not reveal further details about the car or its owner but have warned people to be careful if they are approached by anyone who arouses suspicion.
The investigation will continue.
"While the markings on the BMW by themselves do not appear to constitute an offence, police are still making inquiries," a police spokeswoman said.
Greens MLC Tammy Franks pledged to raise a private member's bill to address the "grey area" on fake police cars. She said laws should reflect that we don't tolerate intimidation by individuals or foreign powers.