The man’s mother called the police on Christmas Eve, saying she had received videos of her son being attacked, along with a demand for the ransom.
Officers from the Kowloon West crime division came to the man’s rescue in Kowloon City later that day.
However, they found that the man’s injuries were light and they arrested him on suspicion of wasting police time, as they suspected the report of his kidnapping was false and that he had been seeking the money to repay his debts.
Another two men aged 20 and 23 were arrested on suspicion of false imprisonment.
The force says it has detained the three arrested men for investigation, and does not rule out more arrests.
Officers say another suspect fled in a car at high speed, rushing several red lights before crashing at the intersection of Waterloo Road and Boundary Street. They’ve listed the case as “furious driving” but have yet to make an arrest.
The maximum penalty for wasting police time is a penalty of HK$2,000 and six months imprisonment.