The first person convicted under Hong Kong’s National Security Law and jailed for nine years in July last year has dropped his decision to appeal, his lawyer said yesterday.
Former waiter, Tong Ying-kit (唐英杰), 24, was found guilty of terrorist activities and inciting secession after driving his motorcycle into three riot police in 2020 while carrying a flag with the protest slogan “Liberate Hong Kong — revolution of our times.”
The ruling was seen as a watershed moment for Hong Kong’s judicial system. At the time, Tong had indicated through his lawyer, Clive Grossman, that he would appeal.
However, Grossman said in an e-mail that Tong, who had pleaded not guilty, had decided not to appeal.
“I have no idea why he dropped the appeal,” Grossman said.
The decision was first reported by the Hong Kong Free Press, which quoted Grossman as saying that he was surprised by his client’s decision.
At the end of Tong’s closely watched trial, judges Anthea Pang (彭寶琴), Esther Toh (杜麗冰) and Wilson Chan (陳嘉信) — picked by Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam (林鄭月娥) to hear national security cases — ruled that the slogan he carried on his motorbike was “capable of inciting others to commit secession.”
Late on Wednesday, Hong Kong democracy advocate Owen Chow (鄒家成) was rearrested during his regular visit to a police station.
The 24-year-old had been released on bail in June last year after nearly four months in detention, on the conditions of not breaking the National Security Law, reporting to the police every day and surrendering all travel documents, among others.
Chow was arrested on suspicion of making remarks since his release that could endanger national security, police said, adding that he would be taken to the West Kowloon Magistrates’ Courts.
“The National Security Division of the Police Force arrested the man ... on suspicion of breaching the court’s bail conditions,” police said in an e-mailed statement yesterday.
“He was suspected of making remarks and actions that could reasonably be regarded as endangering national security during the bail period,” it said, without specifying the remarks.
Chow could not be reached for comment.
Chow is among 15 of the 47 democracy advocates released on bail last year after their arrest in March in a high-profile swoop by authorities. The 47 are accused of conspiring to subvert the government by organizing a primary election for the opposition camp in 2020 to select candidates for legislative polls.
The primary poll was unofficial, non-binding and independently organized.
Authorities said it was a “vicious plot” that threatened national security.
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