• Cheung Chi Ping refuses to explain whereabouts after arrival
  • Case has raised concerns about city's autonomy from Beijing

A second man linked to a Hong Kong publisher of books critical of Chinese leaders has returned to the city from the mainland, according to Hong Kong police.

Cheung Chi Ping met with police Sunday and asked them to drop inquiries into his disappearance, according to a statement posted on the government’s website. Cheung, who was being investigated by mainland authorities for "illegal activities," went missing in October while traveling across the border. Cheung refused to provide more details about his whereabouts, Hong Kong police said.

QuickTake Hong Kong Autonomy

Cheung’s return to the former British colony follows that of Lui Por on Friday. The pair are among five men affiliated with the Mighty Current book publisher who have turned up in the hands of mainland authorities after being reported missing. The case of Lee Po, who didn’t pass through immigration checks before leaving Hong Kong in December, has raised concern about Hong Kong’s autonomy from Communist Party rule in Beijing.

"Police continue to follow through with the other two missing person cases with the Interpol Guangdong Liaison Office of Guangdong Provincial Public Security Department for further details," Hong Kong police said. Besides Lee, who’s also known as Lee Bo, Hong Kong resident Lam Wing-kee also remains missing.

A fifth bookseller, Gui Minhai, disappeared from his Thailand apartment in October and re-emerged in China in January, saying in a televised confession that he had voluntarily turned himself in to authorities over a fatal 2004 traffic accident. 

Gui, who has Swedish nationality, again appeared on Beijing-backed Phoenix TV last week. He said he had avoided rules on importing books into China, partly by changing their covers and putting them in dark nylon bags to evade X-rays.

Lee also said in an interview with Phoenix TV last week that he sneaked into the mainland to help Chinese authorities with an investigation to avoid his colleagues from finding out he was collaborating.

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