| HONG KONG
HONG KONG Popular actor and singer Edison Chen
apologized on Monday after images appearing to show the Hong
Kong star partially nude in the company of several starlets
leaked onto the Internet.
In a video statement Chen, 27, called the postings of the
photographs "intentionally hurtful and malicious."
"I hereby use this opportunity to apologize to anyone who
has been affected by this strange, strange ordeal," Chen said.
Police believe the images were copied from Chen's computer
when it was serviced last year.
"If you ever downloaded any of these images, please do not
forward them to anyone ... If you are still in possession of
these images, I urge you to please destroy them immediately," a
subdued-looking Chen added in the video.
The photographs, which appear to show Chen in bed with
singer Gillian Chung, along with suggestive images of actress
Cecilia Cheung, were recently posted online, sparking a media
frenzy in the celebrity-mad former British colony.
Hong Kong police said some 1,300 private shots of
celebrities had been stolen from a faulty personal computer.
"A person had taken his computer to be fixed, but during
the maintenance period, someone used dishonest means to take
some information from the computer and distributed this
information indiscriminately to others," assistant police
commissioner Wong Fook-chuen told reporters.
While the police gave no specific names, Hong Kong's Ming
Pao newspaper reported the photographs belonged to Chen.
"A person in the shop found hidden inside (Chen's)
computer, confidential nude pictures of naked female stars,
which were then secretly copied," Ming Pao reported, quoting an
The computer shop was subsequently raided by police
officers in a widening investigation across the territory,
which has led to eight arrests for infringement of obscene
material laws, and the seizure of over 1,000 explicit images,
including four women whom were public figures, the police said.
Hong Kong's police commissioner, Tang King-shing, said the
case was being treated seriously and warned the possession and
distribution of such images might be illegal.
(Editing by Matthew Jones)