A 34-year-old woman and her parents pleaded guilty on Monday to charges of false imprisonment and assault of a sixteen-year-old girl.

Gao Yuqi, a jobless woman, plus her mother Gao Xiuting and father Gao Xingong, both 59, committed the offence on the girl in a flat on Paterson Street in Causeway Bay on Hong Kong Island on January 11, Sing Pao reported.

The court heard that Gao Yuqi was friends with the girl and invited her for a drink in the early hours on January 11. On the afternoon of the same day, Gao accused the girl of stealing her wallet, which had HK$27,000 (US$3,460) cash in it. She asked the girl to come to her home in Causeway Bay.

When the girl arrived, Gao threatened her and demanded that she return the money and smashed her iPhone.

Gao’s parents, who held two-way permits from mainland China, were in the flat. They would not let the girl leave, hitting her in the face and pulling her hair, ears and clothes.

The girl later pretended that she had stolen the money and asked for her phone back so she could call her parents to repay what they had lost.

But the girl called the police instead. Officers arrived at 4:30pm and found the girl, with injuries to her neck, arms, and right ear.

Lawyers for the defendants asked for mercy from the judge as Gao Yuqi and his father had suffered mental illness, while her mother allegedly has a problem comprehending what is going on.

The family was granted bail till the trial resumes on December 1.