King Hung WU (aka BAAG No. 67.i) [????- ] | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

King Hung WU (aka BAAG No. 67.i) [????- ]

King Hung
Alias / nickname: 
BAAG No. 67.i

Abridged from a letter from Wu King Hung, 5.4.1949.

Before the outbreak of the Pacific War I was a broker in a Japanese commercial house.  In November 1940, I was conscripted in Formosa by the Army authorities to be a crew member in the Japanese transport SS "Maya Maru".  In June 1942, the said transport was attacked by the Allied bombardment on the high seas and had to deviate to Hongkong for repair.  When the ship was docked in the Whampoa Dock, I met Mr Lee Fong alias Mr Lui Kar Yan, who was BAAG member No 68, and friendship was at once established.  I sailed again to Formosa by the same sea transport, and as an accident occurred which involved me, I arrived in Hongkong again on 28th October 1942 as a stowaway.  After settling myself in Hongkong by hiring a flat in No 8 Lock Road, Kowloon, I paid visits to Mr Lee and became brothers through our constant contact.

Mr Lee asked me whether I had something to do in Hongkong and I replied in the negative.  Mr Lee then said if I had nothing to do for the moment, it was quite desirable to help him in intelligence work for the BAAG.  Encouraged by the common cause of our Allied countries, I replied to Mr Lee that I was quite willing to work for the secret service under him.  On the 28th February 1943, I began my service by taking a train to Shatin, New Territories, and there I met a boatman, Mr Ho Yau, who passed me a parcel containing $50,000 in Chinese national currency.  Mr Ho Yau said he came from Waichow.  I succeeded in handing over the said sum to Mr Lee.  After a fortnight I again proceeded to Shatin to meet Mr Ho Yau who passed me several packet of medicinal pills, and one of the parcels contained a Revolver and also 12 bullets which were concealed in a match-box.   I passed the parcels to Mr Lee, and on the 31st March 1943 I went, for the third time, to Shatin and brought back NC$50,000.

During the first part of April 1943, Mr Lee, No 68, ordered me to visit my friend Yeung Tin Loong who was working for the Japanese-managed Taiwan Transportation Company, and steal his armlet in order to enter the Kowloon godown areas freely, and to enable me to investigate the movements of the Japanese military sea-transport .  In the middle of April, I encountered a friend who was working on a Jap military ship, and invited him to a drink.  As a result of heavy drink, he disclosed that a fleet of 13 Jap  military ships and 3 Jap destroyers were due to sail for Indo-China at 10 p.m. that night.  I immediately went to Mr Lee, who acted on my information by giving a letter to boatman Yau, who had come out from Shatin and was temporarily staying in Mr Lee's house.  Ho Yau was ordered to take an early train on the following morning to Shatin and by his boat to Waichow, to report to the [Advanced] Headquarters of BAAG.    A week later, Ho Yau brought me pleasant news that my work was very splendid and I was particularly commended by Mr Lee, and told by him that I had been formally enlisted as a member of the BAAG, with number 67.

On the 29th April 1943, the day of the Jap Emperor's birthday anniversary, I succeeded in entering the assembly under disguise as a Jap military lieutenant, and obtained a lot of Jap military secrets  as to the number of Jap Garrison Forces stationed in Hongkong.  In addition I also obtained the number of Jap Military Reserves and that of dependents of Jap Military personnel.  I passed this secret information to Mr Lee, who in turn passed to Ho Yau it in writing for reporting to Waichow.

During the middle of May 1943, Mr Lee ordered me to investigate the Jap artillery outposts in Hongkong, Kowloon and the New Territories.  As I am fluent in the Japanese language, and had made a wide range of Japanese friends, I invited 2 Jap army corporals to a dinner in Mr Lee's residence.  As a result of heavy drinking, the two corporals uncautiously disclosed the locations of Jap anti-aircraft gun posts on the Peak, and on the roofs of various famous European Hotels.  No time was wasted  in reporting this to Waichow through our comrade Mr Ho Yau.  For this. Mr Lee pawned his own golden ring for my expenses in carrying out these activities.

From February to June 1943, I often frequented the Argyle Street Concentration Camp, and secretly and verbally comforted the European internees, and carried out necessary secret service under the strict surveillance of the Jap guards.  Mr Lee ordered me to smuggle out to Shatin confidential information, English language newspapers, whisky, cheese, and typing carbons for transmission by Mr Ho Yau to the Waichow commander Mr Kelly [Clague].

On 2nd or 3rd June 1943, the Waichow Headquarters ordered us to withdraw en bloc to Waichow due to information they had.  Mr Lee had in turn ordered all members to get ready to evacuate on 15th June, 1943.

On mid-night of 9th June, the Jap gendarmerie gave an order for my arrest, acting on information received.  I was absent from my Lock Road residence that night and avoided arrest.  The next morning when I reached my residence I was told by the principal resident that the Jap Gendarmerie  intended to arrest me, and warned me to escape.  I turned to Mr Lee's house and found that all the residents had been rounded up.  I hid in Nr 50 Jordan Road, the house of a friend, for a whole day and sent him to Shatin to find Ho Yau, but the boat had sailed to Waichow.  So I had to wait in Jordan Road.  The Japanese Gendarmerie succeeded in detecting my hiding-place, and this time I was arrested by them under heavy siege, on the morning of 30th June, 1943.   

I was subjected to severe interrogations and tortures, and was then put into Stanley Prison, where I met my comrades who had been previously arrested.  As they possessed no evidence that I was a secret agent, I was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment.  Although subjected to numerous severe tortures and a number of interrogations I did not confess to my work with the BAAG, and never disclosed the activities of my comrades. 

During my imprisonment in Stanley for 6 months I helped the interned Europeans, and I know one of the Europeans was named Mr Anderson of Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation.  After six months I was transferred to  prison in Formosa, and was released on 15th August 1945.



Please if anyone has a photograph of Li Kar Yan/Li Fong #68 (desperately sought by his daughter Mabel), and information of descendants of Ho Yau and Wu King Hung - please reply, or contact me Felix Chanduloy (nephew of Andrew Chan #78 and Josephine-widow of Li Kar yan, cousin of their daughter Mabel)

Going through some of my loose papers during this spell of self isolation due to the Covid-19, I came across what looks to be an “in ship” magazine for a hospital ship called HMNZHS MANGANUI.

I was surprised to find something in there about the two BAAG agents with the same number 67:

BAAG No. 67

You have read or heard about the patriots of many lands - people, who, not counting the price they would have to pay if discovered, continued throughout the war to play their part by means of sabotage, espionage etc., which helped (sometimes in a small and sometimes large measure) to the defeat of our enemies.

Let me introduce you to two people who worked behind the scenes in Hong Kong.

Both were members of the BAAG (British Army Aid Group) - a group who worked helping the POW’s in Hong Kong Camps by arranging escapes, providing guides through enemy held territory, besides obtaining information of a military nature which was of value to the Allies in the South China area. The full activities of the 'BAAG' will one day be told by a more versatile pen than mine - I can only relate for your interest the story of these two men. I met both in Stanley Prison, Hong Kong under the following circumstances: The first after his conviction and the second before trial. They never met each other and did not know of each others existence.

One day towards the end of 1943 I was working in the Prison Garden and a Japanese prisoner, newly convicted, spoke to me. (Korean and Formosan prisoners were classified as Japanese) I had heard by prison wireless that a Japanese was on remand awaiting trial for espionage. All the prison inmates were certain he would be executed. But, here was the new prisoner having escaped the supreme penalty by a merciful providence and sentenced to 15 years. He told me his surname was Wu and his number 67 in the BAAG.

A couple of months later he was transferred to Canton en route to Japan.

The last time I saw him he said “They will beat me again. Please pray for me every day."

The second I met in August 1944. At this time owing to illness I had to enter the prison hospital, although the only treatment the Nips gave to sick folk was a cut in one’s rice ration. A Chinese remand prisoner was in the same ward and I recognised him as a Police interpreter before the Japanese attack on the Colony. Recognition was mutual. He told me his story. He was No. 67 in the BAAG and knew what his sentence would be when he was tried. "I know they will give me the axe. Will you please see my wife is cared for when the war is over.” I promised. His surmise proved to be correct and he paid the extreme penalty.

These people must not be forgotten. As one 67 passed on another took his place - they knew what to expect if caught, but did not falter.

I pray for you both - No. 67.