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Methodist chapel in Cornwall offers sanctuary to Hong Kong Chinese

A Methodist chapel in Cornwall has offered sanctuary to a Hong Kong Chinese man who went on the run when threatened with deportation by the Home Office. Alfred Tong, of Camborne, near Penzance, who has lived in Britain for 17 years and has a British wife and three-year-old daughter, slept rough for three nights before taking shelter in the church at Marazion after his home was raided by Home Office officials. He fears he will never see his family again if he is deported to Hong Kong.

He was given refuge by the church minister, the Rev Allan Bailey. Though the concept of sanctuary has no legal force in this country, Mr Bailey said he hoped that public opinion would keep Mr Tong safe until his case could come up before the European Court of Human Rights. Both the Anglican Bishop of Truro, the Rt Rev Michael Ball, and the chairman of the Cornwall Methodist district have appealed to the Home office on his behalf.