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9 Arrested in Killing of Hong Kong Editor: Police

Hong Kong police say nine people have been arrested in connection with a vicious attack on a former newspaper editor.

Kevin Lau received serious wounds to his torso and legs after being attacked last month by a man with a meat cleaver.

Police Commissioner Andy Tsang said Wednesday mainland authorities arrested two men, while Hong Kong police arrested seven others.

Tsang said the suspects are believed to be associated with triads, or local criminal gangs. He said the killing does not appear to have been politically motivated.

Lau was the editor of the Ming Pao, a paper known for its investigative reporting and hard-hitting coverage of mainland China.

Weeks before the attack, he was fired and replaced by a journalist said to have pro-Beijing leanings, sparking fears the mainland might be attempting to undermine the publication's independence.

Journalists and rights groups have warned that media freedom in Hong Kong is being stifled by increased censorship, and the dismissal of influential liberal journalists.

Commissioner Tsang said Wednesday that all nine suspects in the attack were Hong Kong residents. It is unclear whether those in mainland China would be sent to Hong Kong for prosecution.

He said he could not rule out more suspects being arrested in the case.

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