Trans woman subjected to invasive search at Hong Kong airport
A transgender woman has accused Hong Kong customs officials of behaving like animals after being subjected to a body search and being detained for over nine hours.
The South American transgender woman, who has remained anonymous for legal reasons, arrived at Hong Kong’s Chek Lap Kok airport seeking asylum. She had previously fled South America after being the victim of transphobic attacks where she had been stabbed and shot.
The woman was hoping to speak with her consulate in Hong Kong as she needed to update her passport to reflect her changed appearance caused by hormone treatments in the transition process.
Upon arriving in Hong Kong the woman was refused entry as her passport did not match her appearance.
The woman alleges she was forced to endure a full body search by male officers – despite asking for a female to be present.
She said: "They were animals. I kept asking for a female but they said if I refused [the search] they would deport me. When it was over, I was destroyed."
The woman was later released after her story was verified by officials who continue to deny the woman’s allegations.
A spokesperson for Hong Kong immigration told Gay Star News : "The passenger had his clothes on during the whole search and customs officers did not touch any sensitive parts of his body."