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Chinese police free detained UK consulate staffer

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By the Associated Press 

HONG KONG — Chinese police said Saturday an employee at the British Consulate in Hong Kong who was detained on the mainland has been released.

This photo provided by Wilson Li shows Simon Cheng Man-kit, second from left, a resident of Hong Kong. China said Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019, Cheng, a staffer at the British consulate in Hong Kong, has been given 15 days of administrative detention in the neighboring mainland city of Shenzhen for violating regulations on public order. The case is stoking fears that Beijing is extending its judicial reach to semi-autonomous Hong Kong.  (Wilson Li via AP)

This photo provided by Wilson Li shows Simon Cheng Man-kit, second from left, a resident of Hong Kong. China said Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019, Cheng, a staffer at the British consulate in Hong Kong, has been given 15 days of administrative detention in the neighboring mainland city of Shenzhen for violating regulations on public order. The case is stoking fears that Beijing is extending its judicial reach to semi-autonomous Hong Kong. (Wilson Li via AP / MANILA BULLETIN)

Public security authorities in Shenzhen said Simon Cheng Man-kit was released as scheduled after 15 days of administrative detention.

The Luohu public security bureau in Shenzhen, the mainland city neighboring Hong Kong, made the announcement on its Weibo microblog account.

Cheng was detained for violating mainland Chinese law and “confessed to his illegal acts,” the statement said, without providing further details.

“Simon is released. Simon is safe,” said Max Chung, organizer of a rally earlier this week to urge the British government to step up efforts to free Cheng.

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