By Chris Wat Wing-yin:

Why is so much information coming out of the prisons? It turns out that Legislative Councilors have special privileges. They can make as many prison visits as they like. They can bring two persons with them on each visit, and take as much time as they like. They can exchange letters with the prisoners, and correctional officers are not allowed to read those letters. Nor are correctional officers allowed to monitor the conversations between legislative councilor and prisoner. This means that they can do anything that want.

So if the twenty something pan-democratic legislative councilors exercise their special privileges and take turns to make prison visits, the prisoners will have a direct communication channel to the outside world.

Ordinary prisoners are allowed only two visits per month from friends/families for 30 minutes per visit. Apart from working, ordinary prisoners have to undergo psychological counseling, job training, rehabilitation, etc.

So is it justice when people like Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow can have unlimited number of visits, take breaks from work to meet with visitors and occupy the interview rooms that are normally used by lawyers, social workers, social welfare officers and legal aid workers? Is this fair to the other prisoners?

In the past, prisoners want to meet with legislative councilors in order to lodge complaints about their cases. But today these esteemed prisoners are buddies with legislative councilors who use their special privileges to act as pigeon carriers for the prisoners, bringing out letters that would otherwise be in violation of prison discipline.

(Oriental Daily) September 6, 2017.

Under the Prisons Ordinance, each prisoner may receive two visits a month by friends/relatives. Each visit is limited to 30 minutes by at most three persons. For security reasons, these interviews are conducted through glass partitions to prevent physical contact.

There are 13 different occupation types in prison, including clothing manufacturing, knitting/sewing, leather goods, book binding, envelop manufacturing, etc. Prisoners are assigned to an occupation based upon preferences, health, etc. The occupations are grouped by degree of difficulty from A to F. The easiest jobs are cleaning or applying adhesives to envelops. The hardest jobs are construction or machine control. Depending on the job, the pay ranges from $23 to $192 per week.

(Oriental Daily) September 6, 2017.

District Councilors and Legislative Councilors have the right to visit prisoners by reason of "Official Visit." Our newspaper found that more than 20 pan-democratic legislative councilors have signed up, including Fernando Cheung, Charles Mok, Alvin Yeung, Chan Chi-chuen, Helena Wong, Hui Chi-fung, Andrew Wan, Eddie Chu, etc. Their visit schedules are systematically organized so that they don't show up at the same time. While the prisoners attend these Official Visits in air-conditioned rooms, they are relieved of their regular work duties (e.g. kitchen, laundry room, cleaning etc).

- If they don't go to work because of the Official Visits during the day, will they still get paid? Or will the pay go to whosoever has to be tasked with doing their work?

- The rules say that Legislative Councilors can take two persons along, bring any mat materials and take as much time as necessary. This set of conditions leads to the perfect set up for ... a game of mahjong. The prisoner, the legislative councilor and two friends can bring their own mahjong table and tiles, and play as many rounds as they like in the air-conditioned interview room with correctional officers standing guard outside the door.

- Would that be wrong? Of course not. The rules allow it, and therefore this is rule-of-law which is Hong Kong's core value.

(Oriental Daily) September 6, 2017.

According to information, the most frequently visited out of the 16 imprisoned persons are the three women at the Lo Wu Correctional Institution. Former Hong Kong Federation of Students deputy secretary-general Lester Shum has visited his girlfriend Willis Ho many times already.

Yesterday morning at about 10am, Lester Shum took a taxi from the city to the Lo Wu Correctional Institution. Legislative Councilor Eddie Chu Hoi-dick arrived about 5 minutes. While they waited, they smoked cigarettes. Then they went in together and came back around noon. Lester Shum came out first and smoked a cigarette. Eddie Chu came out five minutes later. The two left together by mini-bus.

According to information, Lester Shum's home is in Sham Shui Po district. If he took a taxi from home, it would cost him over $300. The Imprisoned Activists Support Fund pays for transportation of visitors nominated by the prisoners upon presentation of receipts.

(South China Morning Post) September 4, 2017.

A new independent fund is aiming to raise HK$4 million for the 16 recently jailed Hong Kong activists including the poster boy for the citys pro-democracy movement Joshua Wong Chi-fung and the families they left behind.

The Imprisoned Activists Support Fund, which was set up on Monday, hopes to provide HK$10,000 a month to each jailed activist for them to support their families.

These activists are fighting for ideals and justice, instead of their personal gain, Civic Party barrister Margaret Ng Ngoi-yee said. Ng is one of the funds four trustees alongside Canto-pop singer, Denise Ho Wan-see, and academics, To Yiu-ming and Hui Po-keung.

Society has the responsibility [to help] these activists, Ng said.

The fund will also be used to help settle the activists legal fees, cover any expenses accrued as well as help their families with the travelling costs of visiting them in prison.

More than 60 per cent of the goal has already been raised after a rally in support of the protesters last month brought in HK$2.53 million. Attended by more than 22,000 people, it was one of the biggest protests since the Occupy.

Ng said those who made donations during the march were thinking of the activists so the fund currently had no plans to assist other protesters who might be imprisoned in future.

We do not want to be too ambitious as we have limited experience [in managing such a fund], Ng said. This fund is a golden opportunity to unite society and we do not want to trigger unnecessary suspicions because of carelessness.

When asked if they would offer help to those regarded as localists, she said: We will cross the bridge when we come to this.

Former lawmaker Long Hair Leung Kwok-hung, of the League of Social Democrats, also called on citizens not to underestimate the power of making donations. Every penny given is offering support to politically suppressed people, Leung said.

(Oriental Daily) September 4, 2017.

Baptist University School of Journalism assistant professor To Yiu-ming, Lingnan University Department of Cultural Studies associate professor Hui Po-keung and others announced the establishment of the Imprisoned Activists Support Fund.

They state that they intend to raise $4 million. The $2.53 million raised from the August 20 demonstration march will go to this Fund. They have asked the Confederation of Trade Unions to open a bank account for them. The money will pay for legal fees and relieve their family hardships. Each family will receive $10,000 per month unconditionally.

Internet comments:

- Let us do the arithmetic.

The Civic Square 3 were sentenced to 6 + 7 + 8 = 21 months, which would mean $210,000.

The North East New Territories 13 were sentenced to 13 x 13 = 169 months, which would mean $1,690,000.

The total outlay is $210,000 + $1,690,000 = $1,900,000.

The remaining sum of $4,000,000 - $1,900,000 = $2,100,000 will be used to cover the "handling/processing fees" of the organizers.


When I grow up, I want to be a Fund administrator too ... it is so much fun and rewarding ...

- "Handling/processing"? I see. Someone has to count the money and it is long, hard and tedious work.

- I almost gagged when I saw that the money has to go through the Confederation of Trade Unions. After all, their chairman Lee Cheuk-yan is famous for keeping the $500,000 from Jimmy Lai to the Confederation of Trade Unions in his own personal account for 9 months under the explanation: "I kept it in my pocket temporarily."

- As Tsang Chi-ho said, this is a "gift to the family in bereavement."

- Being in jail is a full-time 7-days-a-week 24-hours-per-day job. There is no such thing as going home after work, because you are at work every hour every day every week every month. There are 24 hours a day and 30 days per month, for a total of 720 hours per month. A monthly salary of $10,000 is equivalent to $10,000 / 720 = $13.88 per hour. According to the law, the minimum wage is $34.50 per hour. So this $10,000 bereavement gift is truly pathetic.

- When you go to jail, all expenses are paid for by the taxpayers. Without having to do anything, this $10,000 is airdropped on you. This is a gift, not a salary and therefore there is no Mandatory Provident Fund withholding. So why not take the money and run?

- When you are in jail, you can only spend your prison salary. So if you go to jail for 30 years for murdering a few police officers, you will have 360 months x $10,000 per month = $3,600,000 waiting for you when you come out. This is how you can afford to buy an apartment.

- For triad gangs, the "family settlement money" for jailed members is usually paid as a lump sum up front. By contrast, this Fund will pay by the month. The difference? Well, there is the small matter of investment interest. More importantly, you do not have to pay the entire jail term. For example, if you are sentenced to 13 months in prison, your actual time spent in prison is only about 2/3 after deducting Saturdays, Sundays and official holidays. So the Foundation only has to pay $90,000 instead of $130,000, leaving more money to cover the "handling/processing fees."

- (Wen Wei Po) September 5, 2017.

Baggio Leung Chung-hang's Facebook: I don't know what to say ...

Lai Chun Rex's Facebook

[Justice Defense Fund] It will only defend the DQ4.
The disqualification of Leung/Yau is not about justice?

[Imprisoned Activists Support Fund] It will only support the North East New Territories 13 + Civic Square 3.
All those in jail for the police-civilian clash in Mong Kok are not "imprisoned"? Or are they not "activists"?

Might they feel embarrassed about choosing such names for their funds?

Localist comments:

- If that was what you intended all along, then you should not fucking call for Grand Unity for everybody to come out and march with you on August 20th. And when you ask for donations, you should fucking state clearly that not a fucking cent will go to the Mong Kok Fishball Revolutionaries. Fuck your mother!

- When you call for people to participate, you say that party lines don't exist anymore at a time of political persecution. But when it comes to dividing the loot, you only take care of your own kind. You are really fucking awesome.

- These people are such fucking bastards. They have declared that they own the Resistance brand and everybody else is just the hoi polloi.

- You wanted the Localists to put down their ideological disagreements and work with you. But when it comes to handing out support, you isolate them on the outside. What kind of game is this? I can tell you confidently that as long as you won't put down your own ideological disagreements, you can never hope to have us work with you across party lines. I will tell everybody that I know that this Fund is a pan-democratic operation designed to help themselves, and therefore not a single cent should be given to them. In the upcoming by-election, we would rather cast blank ballots than vote for the pan-democrats.

- I don't understand why the Localists should be begging the much detested leftist retards for handouts? Why can't the Localists start their own fund?

- Have you waken up yet? For the pan-democrats, the Mong Kok Fishball Revolution martyrs are Enemies of the People of Democracy who have to destroyed.

- Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow are elite university students with respectable bourgeois family backgrounds. They are adulated by the western media. Giving them money will help the reputation of the Fund and those associated with it.

The Mong Kok Fishball Revolution martyrs are lower-class poorly educated riffraffs who have at most part-time menial jobs. As rioters, they have negative propaganda value. Giving them money implies that the Fund supports assault, arson and vandalism.

The pan-democrats are investing their money in assets with the higher ROI (return-on-investment). It is that simple.

- Before: (Silent Majority for HK) Prior to the August 20th demonstration march, a list of 117 'political prisoners' was circulated around for people to donate to help.

After: (Ming Pao) The Support Group for the 16 Imprisoned Resisters announced that they raised over $2,515,690 during the August 20th demonstration march. They plan to establish a foundation whose bank account will be published later.

- The Fund people said that they would stop as soon as they reach the $4 million mark and that they have no intention of helping anyone else.  This means that the China Liaison Office 9 have been cast adrift:

(Oriental Daily) September 4, 2017.

Today (September 4) will be the day for the opening ceremony for undergraduate students at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. On this morning, the students were greeted by large number of black-background-white-lettered vertical banners with the words "Hong Kong Independence" around the campus.

In addition, the Goddess of Democracy statue outside the MTR station was drapped with a black-and-white-striped skirt on which were written the names of almost 100 social activists who have either been sent to prison or are standing trial, including Joshua Wong, Alex Chow and Nathan Law. The title was "The List of Hong Kong Political Prisoners."

In addition, there were many small posters with the sentences "Refuse to sink down" and "Only choice is independence" in Chinese and "Fight for our homeland" and "Fight for Hong Kong independence" in English.

CUHK Vice-chancellor Joseph Sung Jao-yiu said that there is freedom of speech at the university, and and the administration won't react as long as the students don't break the law and don't interfere with normal learning. He also urged the students to express their wishes with peace, reason and non-violence. Concerning the student leaders who were sent to prison, Sung said that there is plenty of discussion already. He said that judicial independence is an important bedrock for Hong Kong and he wants the public to have confidence in the judiciary and trust that the judges are ruling in professional manners.

(Ming Pao) September 4, 2017.

Chinese University Student Union president Au Tze-ho admitted that they hang up the skirt on the Goddess of Democracy because they want to remind students about the political prosecutions. However, he said that the Student Union did not hang up the Hong Kong independence banners. However, he thinks that the banners remind incoming students that "they should do those things that they believe are correct."

The Chinese University Student Union said on Facebook that the materials on Hong Kong independence (including the horizontal banner) were removed by school personnel about 30 minutes later. The Chinese University Student Union found the action regrettable. They said that they contacted the school but were told that the subject of Hong Kong independence was sensitive and had to be cleared out. They said that some of the materials were present in Cultural Plaza which was managed by the Student Union. Thus, they deplore the school administration for trampling on the right of the Student Union to manage student space.

(SCMP) September 6, 2017.

The student union of Chinese University has threatened escalating action if heads of the institution do not respond by Wednesday 7pm to a row over the mysterious appearances of campus banners and posters advocating Hong Kong independence.

On Tuesday the university appeared to be pinning the blame on the union for not enforcing rules on the act which had been repeated at a different location a giant banner and a wall of posters with the independence theme had reappeared at the campus a day after similar materials created a stir when they suddenly surfaced on the school grounds.

No one had claimed responsibility for the move and by 8.30am on Wednesday, the banners were still hanging in an area managed by the union. Two students were seen stationed at the site to prevent the materials from being removed.

The university had warned any advocacy of independence would be a breach of the Basic Law, which states that Hong Kong is an inalienable part of China.

On late Tuesday night, the student union issued the deadline to outgoing vice chancellor Professor Joseph Sung Jao-yiu and his would-be successor Rocky Tuan Sung-chi to respond further and state their positions on the matter, threatening escalating action if they failed to do so.

At least three large black banners bearing the words Hong Kong independence in Chinese and English were taken down on the first day of the school year on Monday.

But the stunt was repeated on Tuesday morning at a different location, with a black banner hung in the middle of Cultural Plaza, an open space near the canteens and bustling with students and staff.

Posters which read Fight for Our Homeland. Fight for Hong Kong Independence also filled a nearby democracy wall, which allows students to post their ideas freely without prior permission.

Union president Au Tsz-ho said anyone could put up posters on the democracy wall without prior permission, but applications must be made to the union to display banners.

Asked whether anyone had applied to display the controversial banner on Tuesday, he said the union only spotted it in the morning.

A student had come to us [on Monday] night to retrieve the banner that was previously taken down, but we do not know whether todays was also his work, he said.

The schools Office of Student Affairs stepped in to urge the union to prevent a recurrence.

We have noted the posters and banners advocating Hong Kong independence. Such ideas have constituted a breach of relevant provisions of the law, and go against the universitys stance of absolute disagreement to independence, a letter addressed to the student union said. It also urged the union to strictly enforce the regulations on managing the area without specifying them and warned that the office would intervene and take down inappropriate materials if necessary.

In a written response, the union reiterated Cultural Plazas significance in allowing students to express their ideas and discuss current issues.

It has always been such a place, and should remain unchanged ... Yet the university management has removed a banner without permission from the student union on the commencement day of the academic year, the statement read. We are of the opinion that the action taken by the university is not appropriate, and we would like to express our deep regret at such action. We hereby urge the university to respect the autonomy of the student union, especially in terms of the management of the Cultural Plaza.

After a meeting with Office of Student Affairs director Raymond Leung Yu-chiu on Tuesday, the union issued the statement demanding a clarification from Sung and Tuan, and reiterated that it would respect the autonomy and freedom of speech of students.

The student body was coy on whether it endorsed the advocacy of independence.

In a speech at the convocation ceremony on Monday, Au said he was glad to see that students were doing their best to voice their opinions on matters they believe are right after spotting such materials in campus.

Sung also said on Monday students were free to express their opinions as long as they did not break the law.

On Wednesday the student union said it would hold a forum to discuss freedom of speech and whether Hong Kong independence should be raised on the campus. The forum will be held from 12.30pm to 2pm at Cultural Plaza. Radical localists including Jason Chow Ho-fai, spokesman for the Hong Kong National Party, and Roy Wong Toi-yeung, the leader of Hong Kong Indigenous, will attend the talk.

(SCMP) September 6, 2017.

An open letter jointly issued by the student unions of seven Hong Kong tertiary institutions has labelled the removal of independence-related materials from campuses a serious erosion of academic autonomy.

City University, Hang Seng Management College, Lingnan University, Polytechnic University, Education University, Open University and Chinese University issued the letter on Wednesday after banners and posters advocating Hong Kongs separation from China were spotted at more universities in the city.

Freedom of speech and thought is a God-given human right. People may disagree with views on independence, but [anyone] should enjoy the right to talk about it, the letter said.

The suppression of such ideas by the school not only deprives political rights from students, but is a humiliation to academic freedom.

The unions condemned their institutions for what they called a clampdown on free speech by removing the banners.

Materials calling for independence appeared at the University of Hong Kong, City University, Polytechnic University, Education University and Shue Yan University from Tuesday afternoon. Some were put up by student unions, while others were done anonymously.

On Monday at least three large black banners bearing the words Hong Kong independence in Chinese and English were found festooned at Chinese University in Sha Tin as the new academic year kicked off.

On Wednesday, Chinese Universitys student union warned it might take legal action to stop banners being removed from the campus, saying it was considering seeking a judicial review over the school managements handling of the matter. The union said it sought a response from the school by 7pm on Wednesday, but none had been received as of 7.30pm.

Students at Education University admitted they had hung a large black banner bearing the phrase Hong Kong independence outside the library of their Tai Po campus on Tuesday evening.

Union president Lala Lai Hiu-ching said the groups primary aim was to support their counterparts at Chinese University.

Asked if the union championed independence, she said it was an option that could not be ignored.

We support the discussion of different ways forward for Hong Kong, Lai said. But we have now demonstrated that the school will engage in political screening [of publicity materials], hurting our autonomy and freedom of expression.

Her views were shared by Apostle Lau Chak-fung, who heads the student union of the privately funded Shue Yan University.

A democracy wall at its Braemar Hill campus was filled with independence posters as of Wednesday afternoon. They remained up at 5pm on Wednesday.

We put them up after a consensus within the union that we should rally behind our peers at Chinese University, Lau said.

If people disagreed, he added, they should respond by putting up posters of their own, instead of tearing down materials they disliked.

Lau also revealed that a meeting between the student union leaders was being arranged within the next few days to coordinate their actions.

A similar, smaller-scale stunt was carried out at City University by a student whose identity was not yet confirmed.

City Universitys student union claimed posters advocating independence had been pasted on the Kowloon Tong campus democracy wall a notice board for students to display materials freely and removed by security personnel.

From our understanding, the posters met all regulations, the union said.

It was told by security staff that there was no record of the student responsible. The union rejected that explanation.

The move not only destroyed the trust between the school and the union, but also the freedoms of City University students, the union said.

A similar banner remained intact at Chinese University on Wednesday afternoon, more than a day after it had been put up for the second time.

The student union did not claim responsibility for the stunt, but vowed to intervene if school management tried to take it down.

The body also issued a deadline of 7pm on Wednesday for outgoing vice chancellor Professor Joseph Sung Jao-yiu and his would-be successor Rocky Tuan Sung-chi to state their positions on the matter, threatening escalating action if they failed to do so.

Internet comments:

- This was the most awesome display of student power ever! If we can paste 1,000 posters every day, the whole campus will eventually become completely covered by these posters and then we shall be liberated!

- Seriously though, why do these young elite students think that hanging a few banners and pasting a few posters is going to overthrow the Chinese Communists and achieve Hong Kong independence? Hong Kong independence is not a problem; but the intelligence level of these young elite students is the real problem.

- Great job! With a few more tricks like these, Article 23 will be on our heads with full public support.

- These university students always say "無懼中共打壓" (unafraid of the suppression by the Chinese Communists). That is why they sneak out in the middle of the night to hang the banners and paste the posters.

- They are so fearless that they won't identify themselves. They continue to hide their faces even as they continue to accept government subsidies and parental allowances. And they think that they are the next Martin Luther King's.

- Next stop, these fearless university students will travel to Tiananmen Square and unfurl banners about "Hong Kong independence." The stop after that will be twenty years of "Re-education through labor reform" at Beidahuang (Great Northern Wilderness).

- If they are truly fearless, they should have taken Facebook videos and dare the police to arrest them.

- Independence? They can start with taking Chinese University of Hong Kong into independence and rejecting all subsidies from the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government of the People's Republic of China.

- The Chinese University of Hong Kong must make a decision. If it is to be part of the Hong Kong Nation, then it cannot be a Chinese university because everybody knows that Hong Kong is not China.

- As usual, nobody cares about the janitor aunties/uncles who will be tasked with removing these posters.

- Freedom of speech means that you are allowed to advocate Hong Kong independence, or overthrowing the Chinese Communist Party, or polygamy, or bestiality. But you are not allowed to destroy public property. Those posters were glued onto the walls; when they are pulled out, the paint comes off. The university will have to repaint the walls.

- At least the "King of Kowloon" Tsang Tsou-choi (see New York Times, May 4, 2011)'s graffiti had some artistic merit.

- Why does the CUHK Student Union want to drape a skirt on the Goddess of Democracy? Because they know that they will get television air-time for what would be otherwise ignored as Facebook nonsense.

(TVB) September 4, 2017. CUHK SU president Au Tze-ho said: "I believe that the Court of Appeal ruling might have scared certain students away from taking certain extreme actions. But when I think that something is right, I won't care too much. If you determine that this is worthwhile and if you are willing to possibly pay some heavy price, you should continue to do so. Rule-of-law is dead in Hong Kong except by name. When the laws are unjust, I don't think that there is any need to observe them."

- Of course, Au Tze-ho won't be leading the way to break the law. His duty as CUHK SU president is to provide assistance to those students who are arrested for breaking the law.

I may be wrong. And Au Tze-ho can show that I am wrong by leading the charge to break into prison to free the political prisoners of conscience.

- (Ming Pao) September 5, 2017. The CU Discovery Facebook announced that a "Hong Kong independence" horizontal banner was seen in Cultural Plaza the next morning. The CUHK SU Facebook shared that post with the comment: "In the face of the university administration oppressing discussions of Hong Kong independence, our fellow CUHK students are still fearless."

- Whenever your erect a banner, the security guards are going to remove it within minutes. You have to buy the materials and write the words; they only have to throw it away. Who is going to run out of energy?

By the way, is this going to bring Hong Kong independence any closer?

- Fearlessness should mean that (1) you erect the banner and (2) you stay there to protect the banner from being removed, to the extent of willing to give up your life.

Fearfulness means that (1) you erect the banner in the middle of the night and flee and (2) you refuse to identify yourself as the responsible person.

- (Wen Wei Po) September 7, 2017.

Yesterday a poster did the rounds on Facebook.

The posters contained the words:
Sorry, we refuse to be represented.

A comment was attached: "We refused to be represented, we refuse to have our viewpoints bullied, we refuse to maintain a cowardly silence." There was a call for students to show up at 530pm at the Cultural Plaza. "We will use civilized words to express our voices." People were encouraged to forward this poster, adding their own comments on the bottom half, "respecting others and refraining from personal attacks or unfounded insults."

- (Ming Pao) According to Senior Counsel Ronny Tong Ka-wah, those banners and posters may be in violation of CAP 200 Crimes Ordinance:

9. Seditious intention

(1) A seditious intention is an intention

(a) to bring into hatred or contempt or to excite disaffection against the person of Her Majesty, or Her Heirs or Successors, or against the Government of Hong Kong, or the government of any other part of Her Majestys dominions or of any territory under Her Majestys protection as by law established;

(b) to excite Her Majestys subjects or inhabitants of Hong Kong to attempt to procure the alteration, otherwise than by lawful means, of any other matter in Hong Kong as by law established; or

(c) to bring into hatred or contempt or to excite disaffection against the administration of justice in Hong Kong; or

 (d) to raise discontent or disaffection amongst Her Majestys subjects or inhabitants of Hong Kong; or

(e) to promote feelings of ill-will and enmity between different classes of the population of Hong Kong; or

(f) to incite persons to violence; or

(g) to counsel disobedience to law or to any lawful order.

10. Offences

(1) Any person who

(a) does or attempts to do, or makes any preparation to do, or conspires with any person to do, any act with a seditious intention; or

(b) utters any seditious words; or

(c) prints, publishes, sells, offers for sale, distributes, displays or reproduces any seditious publication; or

(d) imports any seditious publication, unless he has no reason to believe that it is seditious,

shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable for a first offence to a fine of $5,000 and to imprisonment for 2 years, and for a subsequent offence to imprisonment for 3 years; and any seditious publication shall be forfeited to the Crown.

- Ahem, $5,000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years! Now I can see why the CUHK SU from the president down will only admit to posting the list of political prisoners of conscience but declined to claim knowledge of the "Hong Kong independence" banners and posters. Fearless they are not; gutless they are.

- (SCMP) Pan-democrats pay price of not saying no to Hong Kong independence. By Alex Lo. September 6, 2017.

You either support Hong Kong independence or you dont. The vast majority of locals oppose it. Only a few advocate it, about 17 per cent of people, if a 2016 Chinese University survey is anything to go by.

Its a simple position to take: either/or. Yet, if you ask the opposition in the legislature and other anti-mainland groups, many would give a non-committal answer, and then dodge the whole question by reframing it as one of freedom of speech. Its usually along the line of people should have the right to say whatever they like.

I have more respect for the secessionists, even though I think they are doing tremendous damage. At least they have the guts to state what they believe in.

Not so our opposition. Among such groups is Chinese University student union. Giant banners and a string of posters advocating independence surfaced on its campus at the start of the new academic year this week. No one has so far claimed responsibility. University management, quite reasonably, took the items down.

Predictably, the student union is not saying whether it supports independence, but instead has accused the university of censorship and suppressing separatism as a legitimate topic of discussion.

But how do you suppress free speech if no one has claimed the right and/or responsibility to put up such things? Even if someone had claimed ownership, its still within the universitys right to take them down, regardless of the message.

Suppose those posters promoted the Communist Party or Chinese nationalism, would the student union still defend them as energetically as now?

The latest incident, though, can be a learning moment. People have every right to exercise and defend free speech, but they are also morally obliged to state their position with respect to the content of the speech they are defending, whether it be white supremacy, the national security law or Hong Kong independence. Otherwise, free speech as a right is just vacuous.

Moreover, by refusing to repudiate independence, the pan-democrat opposition has effectively allowed its own campaign for greater democracy to be hijacked.

Its leaders may not want to lose the support of young voters sympathetic to independence. But they now risk losing the whole pro-democracy movement and inviting Beijing to interfere.

- CUHK Secrets Facebook

Sticking to the facts, when you cover the entire Democracy Wall with copies of the same poster so that other people have no space left, then this is infringing upon other people's freedom of speech. Besides, there were other things on the wall before but you have covered them up. If you can cover other people up, can I find something else to cover all your posters?
Before you get cocky enough to start a course to educate people, can you please check the facts first.
The anonymous posters are already violating the rules for using the Democracy Wall.
By posting those posters, they have already disrespected the consensus of the entire student body.
If someone pasted anonymously a poster to support the return of Hong Kong to China (as One Country One System),
we'll see the Student Union immediately ripped the poster off for violating the rules for using the Democracy Wall.
Please don't preach about democratic principles. It was always an issue that all is permissible if you hold the correct position.

- (Apple Daily) September 6, 2017. The City University Student Union said 「寧鳴而死,不默而生」(we would rather speak and die than kept silent and live). They said that they would never submit to oppression. If students have to go to jail for using the words "Hong Kong independence", then 「我哋慷慨就義,成為香港主權移交以嚟第一批文字獄犯。」(we will go to our deaths like martyrs and be the first group of people jailed for free speech after the transfer of sovereignty).

- Good, please remember what you said here. If you end up being sentenced to jail, then please don't ask for legal aid to go to the Court of Final Appeal.

- (Ming Pao) September 6, 2017.

Fellow student Au Tze-ho said that what Hong Kong is missing are the communities that were present in old movies. "I look at the street today and I see only drug store chains everywhere. There is no human feel." Hong Kong has changed a lot. But what are the stores changing? Did the communities change because the stores change? Are the communities solely responsible for human feel? It is natural for people to be nostalgic about the people in old communities. But what Au Tze-ho really wants to say is that there are too many mainland Chinese tourists, such that the many stores turn into dispensaries to make money. If we want to restore the old Hong Kong, mainland Chinese tourists should not be coming.

Fellow student Au Tze-ho said that two senior Macau citizens were arrested for sharing "content farm" information that was unfavorable to the government. Those two citizens were arrested because they distributed inaccurate information -- "five corpses" were never found at the described location and the government did not cover up the non-existent incident.

Fellow student Au Tze-ho said that students can be arrested for insulting the national anthem because their putonghua is not good. Anyone with a modicum of knowledge about the law can assure you that nobody will be prosecuted for not speaking good putongua. They can arrest you for breaking the relevant laws.

I refer to Au Tze-ho as "fellow student" because I am a CUHK alumnus. This fellow student is very disappointing. He referred to retired magistrate Chan Pik-kiu as the "newly appointed Convocation chairman." What is this supposed to mean? Irrespective of Chan Pik-kiu's political position (if any), he was elected as Convocation president by a vote among the alumni. Au Tze-ho is disrespecting the election results and the voting alumni. When he lacks even such basic respect, he is an embarrassment to the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

- Wan Chin's Facebook

[Chinese University of Hong Kong Student Union event poster)
Hong Kong independence
Firmly resist political censorship at CUHK
Defend the freedom of speech of the students
Date: September 6, 2017
Time: 12:00-14:00
Location: Cultural Plaza
Hong Kong National Party spokesperson Jason Chow Ho-fai
Former CUHK SU president Ernie Chow Shue-fung
Hong Kong Indigenous convener Ray Wong Toi-yeung
Former CUHK SU president Tommy Cheung Sau-yin

The CUHK SU has no scholastics to speak of. They are an insult to the name 'University Student'! Why did the Student Union advertise "Hong Kong independence"? For money, for legislative seats, for by-elections. CUHK SU is shameless to organize a discussion forum with zero "balance of view" and completely loaded with pro-independence propaganda. They invited no scholars from the media, legal and political fields.

The main theme of the forum was freedom of speech. The most important thing about freedom of speech is the balancing of different views. But this forum only has independence/self-determination advocates. So what freedom of speech is there to speak of?

Balancing of views does not mean that you have to invite everybody on stage. But you must invite one or two persons who hold the opposite view or outsiders who have no personal stakes. This is an open forum inside a university campus; this is not the internal congress of a political party. Such is the minimal morality for scholastics but the CUHK SU is openly defying this. They act exactly like the Chinese Communist Party! Don't talk to me about CUHK students! There are only Chinese Communist bandits over there! ...

- (Stand News) September 6, 2017.

At the discussion forum, Legislative Councilor Eddie Chu Hoi-dick said that the actions of the CUHK administration has damaged the freedom of speech and the freedom of academic research. He said that the written explanation from the university administration is not acceptable to normal persons. He demanded the university administrate to identify which Hong Kong ordinance is being violated by the Hong Kong independence banners.

Former CUHK SU president Tommy Cheung Sau-yin said that in 2014, the university administration allowed the presence of "I want genuine universal suffrage" banners on campus, but not "Hong Kong independence" banners now. Therefore, he believes that the university administration must have been forced to do this under tremendous political pressure.

Hong Kong National Party spokesperson Jason Chow Ho-fai said that recent events show that the government is suppressing political dissidents. He said that "freedom of speech no longer exists in Hong Kong."

Hong Kong Indigenous convener Ray Wong said that the government is using national sovereignty to restrict freedom of speech in Hong Kong. When sovereignty clashes with basic human rights, Hongkongers have no choice but to seek independence.

Former CUHK SU president Ernie Chow Shue-fung said that the Basic Law does not have public acceptance, and local Hong Kong laws are being overridden by the interpretations by the National People's Congress Standing Committee. Therefore, there is no point of talking about legal restraints at this time. The primary consideration for university to decide to resist or not lies in their perception of the rights and wrongs of the matter.

- In 2014, the CUHK administration allowed "I want genuine universal suffrage" banners on campus because it did not violate any law. In 2017, the CUHK administration won't accept "Hong Kong independence" banners because Article 1 of the Hong Kong Basic Law states that Hong Kong is an inseparable part of China. The CUHK administration was, is and will be opposed to Hong Kong independence.

(HKG Pao) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. September 2, 2017.

In the past, parents tended to think that the school is a safe place for their children to be educated, to gain knowledge, to evolve and to mature. We never thought that the Parents and Teachers Association could harm our children.

I wrote "in the past" because we can no longer be sure anymore.

Once you shut the door, the classroom is the teacher's world. You can say whatever, teach whatever, use whatever examples, apply whatever interpretations ... nobody else outside knows and nobody can interfere with you. Thus, the classroom is the best place for brainwashing.

I believe that most Hong Kong teachers are dedicated, kind-hearted and normal. But in a polarized society, there will always be a few Yellow Ribbon teachers around, and if you are careless, your children could be trapped. It will take years to rescue them.

In the past few days, the welcoming speech by the Queen Elizabeth Secondary School Alumni Association Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School in Tin Shui Wai student union chairperson Tong Kam-ting has been going around social media (see Facebook). The title of the speech is "Learning to become a disrepectful person" is from a typical victim of brainwashing. Here are some highlights from that speech:

- During my time in the student union, I had quite a few arguments with the two teacher advisors on various matters. In traditional thinking, rebutting your seniors is considered disrespectful and ill-mannered. But precisely because I was not respectful enough, they were made aware of my thinking and my insistence. And then we were able to understand each other.

- I remember the incident when the cabinet members turned their backs towards the national flag on sports day. At the time, many teachers said that we were being disrespectful. But in the face of a Communist regime and a Hong Kong whose freedom is being destroyed day after day ... we insisted on using a disrespectful method of expressing our discontent.

- ... It is hard to believe that so far 24 political prisoners are in jail. They might have used 'disrespectful' spirits to fight for Hong Kong democracy, independence, autonomy and self-determination. These young people may have been criticized by the general public as disrespectful ... but our youthful experiences allow us to stumble around and learn to 'persist' ..."

This speech let us see that today's children think that the Mong Kong riot and other physical clashes was merely about people who 'who were not slick and respectful' enough. For the past three years, nobody has told them that not only was it not disrespectful, it was outright incorrect and unlawful. Simply put, it was not right! Even more simply put, it was wrong!

Being "wrong" is completely different from "not being slick and respectful enough." I don't know if the adults were deliberately vague because they did not want to hurt the children's feelings. But it is the greatest tragedy in education when nobody would care to point out these mistaken ideas.

There are no political prisoners in Hong Kong today. Those individuals were sent to jail in a court after due process. The videos of the precipitating acts can be found all over YouTube/Google. How come the teacher won't show the videos in class and hold a discussion about whether this was violence or not?

When a student representative speaks publicly to the school, the text was cleared by the principal and certain teachers. If this speech was allowed to go on, then the school has approved the viewpoints as representing the position of the school and its teachers. So education there is not about pulling students back when they walk towards a cliff, but to kick them down the cliff.

I have nothing left to say about such a kind of education. I can only ask parents to be careful about how they choose schools, especially remembering this name: the Queen Elizabeth Secondary School Alumni Association Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School in Tin Shui Wai district.

Relevant Link: #490 Secretary for Education Eddie Ng visits Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School

Relevant Link: (YouTube) Tong Kam-ting, you are even more awesome than Joshua Wong!

- (HKG Pao) September 3, 2017.

In the matter of Tong Kam-ting, the Book of Shameful Acts of Pan-Democrats Facebook has ferreted out three teachers at the Queen Elizabeth Secondary School Alumni Association Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School. In her speech, Tong had thanked three teacher advisors. She said that she had some arguments two of them -- Ko Chu-kin and Lai Kim-fung -- but they were nevertheless able to understand each other.

Ko Chu-kin

Lai Kim-fung

But most of all, she wanted to thank teacher Cheung Siu-chung. She said that whenever she had doubts about herself, Cheung would give her the reassurance and impetus. So Cheung Siu-chung may be the person most responsible for the forming of Tong Kam-ting.

The Black Hand at the Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School: Cheung Siu-chung (Professional Teachers Union executive committee member)

When Secretary of Education Eddie Ng said that "there is no need to discuss Hong Kong independence in schools," Cheung Siu-chung wrote an essay for Ming Pao titled: <When the school campus becomes the battlefield for political fights>. Cheung said that teaching Hong Kong independence in school is correct and necessary.

Cheung Siu-chung has a number of interesting Facebook posts. Here are his comments about the 2016 Rio Olympics:

Cheung Siu-chung: Does anyone think the same way as I do in wanting to see the Chinese national team get routed?
Cheung Siu-chung: If you want the Chinese athletes to win all the gold medals, then they should just take part in the Chinese National Games.

Commentator: Sir Cheung, I really want to ask you just why you so badly want the national team to lose? Have they offended your whole family? Pardon me for saying this so clearly, but I feel that your post is going too far.

Cheung Siu-chung: So ... I also really want to ask  you why you don't want me to want the Chinese team to lose, or why you want me to want the Chinese team to win? I don't remember having offended your entire family either. Sorry, pardon me for saying so clearly, but I feel that your reply is going too far.

According to one parent, "Actually most of the students at the Tong Kwok-wah Secondary School are pure and innocent and don't get involved in politics. But the brainwashing by the teachers have created a few anti-China students, such that Tong Kam-ting can hijack all the students in the school ... a few years ago on June 4th, the school used a school bus to take the students to the Victoria Park candlelight vigil. I did not permit my child to go. But he said that his fellow students had no idea why they had to go there. They just sat on the grass and played with their mobile phones. At the time, the students were only about 14 years old. They were being brainwashed by the teachers."

(SCMP) As China bans national anthem disrespect, how will Hong Kong football fans react in match just before key Communist Party meeting? By James Porteous. September 2, 2017.

Hong Kong soccer doesnt loom large in the annals of world history. It barely looms in the annals of Hong Kong soccer history.

But when accounts of the post-handover decades are written, and especially chapters dealing with the increasing anger and discontent among the post-97 generation (and Beijings heavy hand towards them), football will feature prominently.

Chinas fury at anything approaching dissent has resulted in a new law that will see anyone disrespecting the countrys national anthem thrown in jail and it all started in the compact Mong Kok Stadium where Hong Kongs national team play.

In the wake of the Occupy Central protests, anger moved to the football stands and the teams World Cup qualification matches in 2015 became political events, with supporters booing the anthem before each game.

It attracted punishment from world governing body Fifa and more importantly, it now seems clear, the ire of Chinas power brokers.

Mainland residents were supposedly furious after Hong Kong fans booed the anthem before those World Cup thrillers against powerhouses Maldives and Bhutan in 2015.

It didnt help that China and Hong Kong had been drawn in the same World Cup qualifying group and Hong Kongs next game was in China. I have never seen such a security presence at a sporting event as at that game in Shenzhen, though only a handful of Hong Kong fans were allowed across the border.

The return match in Hong Kong in November was laden with political significance. After warnings from Fifa, fans mostly refrained from booing, many holding cards with BOO! printed on them instead. The shouts of We are Hong Kong!! pointedly in English to underline fans sense of a separate identity to their mainland China rivals were unceasing.

Could president Xi a noted soccer fan have been watching at home?

In the five years since he has been in charge he has crushed hopes that the country was becoming more liberal, and brooks no dissent.

You could imagine him getting straight on the big red phone after hearing Hongkongers already in his bad books after Occupy booing his anthem. Sort it out, he might have barked to underlings, with this law the result.

Like most of Beijings responses to Hong Kong misbehaviour, it seems almost calculated to exacerbate peoples concerns and fuel more anger. (And of course, the Communists had so much respect for the man who wrote the anthems lyrics that he died in prison during the Cultural Revolution).

Some Hong Kong fans do not like to be told what to do by the mainland, said professor Brian Bridges, with some understatement.

Formerly head of political science at Hong Kongs Lingnan University, who this year edited an issue of The International Journal of the History of Sport dedicated to sporting identity and politics in Hong Kong and Macau, he expects the law may backfire and only provoke more resistance and publicity.

Tobias Zuser, a local academic and football fan whose field is sporting culture in Hong Kong and China, and who co-hosts The Hong Kong Football Podcast, concurred. The big question will be how authorities would execute [punishment] against 6000 anonymous people. Who booed and who did not? I dont think the law would be successful in muting political dissent at games and it might just trigger fans to think of creative responses.

(SCMP) As China bans national anthem disrespect, how will Hong Kong football fans react in match just before key Communist Party meeting? By James Porteous. September 2, 2017.

Supporters at Hong Kong Stadium for the Asia Cup Qualifier against Malaysia on October 10 will surely express their opinion of the anthem law quite clearly. Another fine, or even a points deduction, seems likely to be heading to the Hong Kong Football Associations headquarters. Perhaps an inconsequential concern given wider fears over free speech and repression, but still tough on the HKFA.

Its not for the HKFA to comment on mainland legislation or how it will be applied and relate to Hong Kong, said its chief executive, Mark Sutcliffe. We will continue to play the anthem and it will be up to people to decide whether to respect it or not we hope they do, otherwise we will potentially be fined by Fifa again.

- Relevant link: #376 Boo! (2015/11/18) and #731 Guangzhou vs Hong Kong (2017/04/21)

The HKFA pays the fine, so the fans who boo'ed the national anthem don't care. If they keep doing this, the penalties are increased, including heavier fines; loss of match points; closed-stadium home matches; home matches held in away locations; forfeiting matches; suspension of participation; permanent expulsion of membership. Since it does not hurt individual fans, they will keep doing this until Hong Kong is out of FIFA.

- These fans have no genuine fondness for a Hong Kong team most of whose players were born in Africa, South America and United Kingdom. The FIFA matches are an excuse to come out to boo the national anthem.

When Hong Kong is ousted from FIFA, they will move on to the other sports (basketball, volleyball, table tennis, swimming, even cricket). They will not stop until Hong Kong is completely out of all international connections. When that time comes, they will have achieved "Hong Kong is not China" because China has the international connections whereas Hong Kong has none.

Internet comments:

- (Bastille Post) By Lo Wing-hung. August 30, 2017.

In the 1970's, the television stations always played God Save The Queen when their programming is done for the day. At the time, I was still very young but I already wondered why we Chinese people have to watch the Queen of England on television afterwards. At the time, I was still to young to know anything about colonialism.

When I got into secondary school, I learned by studying Chinese history that the Qing empire lost the Opium War and ceded Hong Kong to the British Empire. Then I understood why our television stations played the British national anthem. I was ashamed of the Qing government for losing its honor.

After the handover, there have been many scenes in Hong Kong of booing the national anthem. On the Internet, there are performances of the national anthem with revised lyrics laced with foul language. I found this type of behavior quite unacceptable. If you are dissatisfied with the Central Government, the Chief Executive or the government, you can express yourself by all means. There is no reason to boo your own national anthem, or burn your own flag, or insult your own nation.

Not many people dared to come out to criticize such behavior, because they are afraid of being accused of pro-China and pro-establishment. If mistakes aren't corrected, they can only become more extremely. Eventually wrong becomes right. Among young people, you are abnormal if you don't abuse the national anthem.

Many people adore the United States, where the United States Flag Code stipulates that members of the Armed Forces should give the military salute at the first note and maintain the position until the last note, while citizens should face the flag and stand at attention with their right hand over the heart. At the 2016 Olympics in Rio, women's gymnastics gold medal winner Gabby Douglas had to apologize to the public for failing to adhere to the protocol during the awards ceremony.

The National Anthem Law draft proposal by the National People's Congress said that those present should stand at attention solemnly and not be disrespectful to the national anthem. But pan-democratic legislators are arguing about just what is respectfulness and solemnity.

We can argue about everything. But we should be debating more on the relationship between freedom and self-discipline. We value freedom. But when we exercise our freedoms without appropriate self-discipline, we will be violating the freedoms of others. Have those who sing the national anthem with obscenity-laced lyrics ever considered that their actions are a huge insult to those who respect their national anthems? When they road in laughter, have they ever considered how others feel?

Every nation has its national spirit, which is often represented by the national anthem and the national flag. A nation in which the citizens can let most of its citizens insult its anthem and flag is doomed to extinction. You can oppose the government, but you can't go too far.

- (Speakout HK) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. September 2, 2017.

With the 2012 anti-National Education protests, there emerged a new body of persons in Hong Kong known as The Silent Majority.

As the name suggests, this is a majority group. They are silent for very simple reasons. Firstly, some of them don't know and don't want to know about politics. Secondly, some of them know politics only too well and are disgusted.

These people chose to be silent because they don't want to get into arguments. For example, I am in a whatsapp group with about 30 former fellow students. The most active members are four to five Yellow Ribbons. And then one or two Blue Ribbons occasionally come out to debate them. Meanwhile the more than 20 others chose to read only without responding. They have their own opinions, but they don't want to break up the multi-decade friendships with their authentic opinions.

As one event after another came along -- anti-National Education, Occupy Central, the Mong Kok riot, Leung/Yau, the DQ4 legislators, Mr. Stapler ... most people continue to remain silent with only a few out in the extremes still speaking out. But the silent majority has changed their opinions. Instead of maintaining silence to preserve friendships, they are now silent because they don't want to damage their own intelligence level. Indeed, as I write my articles over the recent years, I have increasingly felt that I am debating with idiots.

A while ago, I got into a debate about how an oath can be said to be "sincere" and "solemn." I already felt silly about this. After all, I can find any primary school student and he can tell me what sincerity and solemnity are about.

More recently, Democratic Party member Lam Tsz-kin claimed to have been kidnapped. When he was freed, he went to eat two filet-o-fish burgers, took a shower and went to bed with 21 staples still on his thighs. Even kindergarten children would laugh at this story. But there are still adults who believe and support Lam Tsz-kin.

Most recently, the debate over the National Anthem Law has been completely unwatchable. We have a Senior Barrister telling us: "If you deliver a lousy rendition of the national anthem, or you sing out of tune, or you use forgot the lyrics, or you had to read the lyrics through your mobile phone as you sing, then are you being solemn?"

And a musician asks: "If I misplayed one note, then is it an insult to the national anthem? If I had toe cramps and cannot stand on my feet during the national anthem, then this is being disrespectful? If I got too involved in the singing anthem ... you know, the lyrics contains phrases such as 'blood and flesh', 'Great Wall', 'hollering', 'cannon barrage' and so, then is that being disrespectful?" It is an insult to your intelligence to have you answer such questions.

Recently I spoke to some friends who are in the "silent majority." I asked them why they choose to remain silent in the face of such gross absurdities. They said: "It is a waste of time to argue with idiots!" ...

- (Oriental Daily) September 3, 2017.

... In truth, the National Anthem law is not going to affect the lives of ordinary citizens. The people who are going to affected are the regular demonstrators, such as Joshua Wong and others who go down to the Golden Bauhinia Square to cross their arms during the flag-raising ceremony on July 1st; or the football fans who boo the national anthem during the China-Hong Kong matches. Unless you know that you are in the business of trouble-making, what do you care about a National Anthem law?

Some people are worried that singing out-of-tune will constitute an insult to the National Anthem. Actually, the existing National Flag law and the National Anthem law do not allow for excessive use. If you drop the flag on the ground by accident, you are not going to be prosecuted; but if you call the press and set fire to the national flag in front of dozens of cameras, you will probably be prosecuted.

In most countries around the world, their citizens maintain a certain solemnity when their national anthems are played. This is basic respect for their nations, their peoples and themselves. If you don't even have that basic respect, then there cannot be any civic society or civic consciousness.

- (YouTube) Former Miss Hong Kong runner-up Cally Kwong was interviewed by Speakout HK:

We are indeed Chinese. If you cannot even sing your national anthem ... what national anthem would you like to sing? You are singing someone else's, right or not? ... Respecting the nation is the same as respecting your own self. If you don't respect your own national anthem, if you don't respect your own nation, then you don't respect your own self.

I think that some people are rebellious by nature, or else they feel that this is so cool. Anyway, they don't want to be like you. But I have to emphasize once more why this is not the same ... You take a look at yourself in the mirror. You are Chinese. You are indeed Chinese. You have to know your roots. You are Chinese. You have to sing the national anthem. Why do you want to do these disrespectful things.

- (Apple Daily) I look in the mirror and I see a Hongkonger.

- Social scientists share the consensus view that human races are a social construct and have no biological basis. So it does not matter if you say that I myself and all my ancestors were born in China. It only matters that I regard myself as a member of the Hong Kong race and not of the Chinese race. That is why we must have Hong Kong independence now.

- Conversely, it does not matter if Cally Kwong and others like her say that they are Chinese. They are not. They are members of the Hong Kong race. They say that they are members of the Chinese race only because they have been brainwashed. When Hong Kong becomes an independent nation, these people will be de-programmed in labor camps.

- As Hong Kong University Student Union president Wong Ching-tak brilliantly pointed out several months ago, China is an imaginary construct created by the Chinese and Hong Kong Communist governments to deceive and oppress us. Once you recognize this truth, China will be unmasked just like The Wizard of Oz.

- (The Law Library of Congress)  France: Decree on National Anthem Desecration

(September 20, 2010) Article 433-5-1, which was inserted in the Criminal Code by the 2003 Law on Internal Security, provides that the act of publicly desecrating the national anthem or the national flag during an event organized or regulated by public authorities is punishable with a 7,500 fine (about US$9,500). If committed during a meeting or gathering, the offense carries a punishment of up to six months of imprisonment as well as the 7,500 fine.

The French national anthem La Marseillaise starts with this verse:

Arise, children of the Fatherland,
The day of glory has arrived!
Against us tyranny's
Bloody banner is raised, (repeat)
Do you hear, in the countryside,
The roar of those ferocious soldiers?
They're coming right into your arms
To cut the throats of your sons, your women!

To arms, citizens,
Form your battalions,
Let's march, let's march!
Let an impure blood
Soak our fields!

It's okay in France but not in Hong Kong?

- In Hong Kong, schools have their own school songs. For example, here are the DBS School Hymn, the Maryknoll Convent School Song, La Salle College School Song. The songs are usually sung in large assemblies with the student body, teachers, principals and guests. Does anyone deliberately make obscene gestures or shout slogans in protest? Why? Because they know that they will be subject to school discipline with penalties ranging from admonitions through demerits all the way to expulsion.

What justifies these school policies? Because the preference of a small number of people to create chaos must not be allowed to violate the rights of the majority who want to sing their school songs in a respectful and solemn manner.

- (RTHK) August 29, 2017.

On RTHK, Legislative Councilor Dennis Kwok Wing-hang (Civic Party) has lots of questions. He wanted to know how to enforce the law at a meeting with several tens of thousands of people. He also wanted to know whether you can read the text messages on your mobile phone during the playing of the national anthem.

A listener called in and expressed his concern whether he has to stand up when the national anthem is played on television during his meal.

- What is respectful and solemn? Well, "I know it when I see it."

The phrase "I know it when I see it" is a colloquial expression by which a speaker attempts to categorize an observable fact or event, although the category is subjective or lacks clearly defined parameters. The phrase was used in 1964 by United States Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart to describe his threshold test for obscenity in Jacobellis v. Ohio. In explaining why the material at issue in the case was not obscene under the Roth test, and therefore was protected speech that could not be censored, Stewart wrote:

I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description ["hard-core pornography"], and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it, and the motion picture involved in this case is not that.

The expression became one of the best-known phrases in the history of the Supreme Court. Stewart's "I know it when I see it" standard was praised as "realistic and gallant" and an example of candor.

- Dennis Kwok is going to encourage people to test the boundaries of the National Anthem Law. Here is how it will unfold.

So someone is going to mispronounce a word. He is not arrested. Someone else else is going to mispronounce two words. He is not arrested. Someone else is going to slip in an obscenity. He is not arrested. As one person after makes their attempts, they need to outdo the preceding person because there is no glory in following what others have already done. Eventually someone goes way overboard such that the whole world can see it. He is arrested, charged and convicted. In his trial, his lawyers won't bother to argue the facts, but concentrate on peripheral issues such as the constitutionality of Annex 3 of the Basic Law.

- Did you think that this script is unlikely? Well, if you transpose this script from the national anthem to the Legislative Council Oath of Office, then this is exactly how it unfolded.

- The important thing to note is that Dennis Kwok will encourage others to test the limits. But he will do nothing of the sort. He is a Senior Counsel and a criminal conviction will bring about his disbarment. It is the job of people like Joshua Wong, Nathan Law, Alex Chow, Billy Fung and Colman Li to be guinea pigs to locate the boundaries of the  law.

(HKG Pao) September 1, 2017

It is Next Media's standard tactic to make up and demonize the nickname of a target person. For example, when CY Leung was elected with 689 votes from the Election Committee, his nickname was naturally '689.'

Now that Carrie Lam was elected with 777 votes, it is naturally that Next Media gives her the nickname '777'. But how is the demonizing coming along? Well, so far the results have been surprising:

Here is a tally of the number of Next Media articles with '777' mentioned:

Month Apple Daily Next Weekly
March 50 3
April 45 8
May 10 2
June 10 2
July 17 1
August 8 1

So it seemed that Next Media has given up its campaign. By comparison, when CY Leung was still Chief Executive in December 2016, Apple Daily had 128 articles and Next Weekly had 12 articles with '689' mentioned. So why is Next Media being so nice to Carrie Lam?

Well, if you look at Google Trends, then the keyword "689" is even more popular than CY Leung. in like manner, "777" is more popular than "Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor."

But that doesn't mean that the nickname "777" is more popular than the proper name "Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor."

Who searches for "689" by country of residence? The top five are Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand, South Korea and China.

Who searches for "777" by country of residence? The top five are Israel, Kuwait, Bulgaria, Croatia and Czech Republic.

What related terms are searched along with "777"? The top five are Boeing 777, Boeing, Casino 777, Vegeta, Vegetta 777.

By far, when people search for "777", they are looking for information on the Boeing 777 aircraft. The people of Hong Kong are not interested in "777" and they do not think "777" is Carrie Lam.

When a Hongkonger searches for "777", he is going to get a lot of Boeing 777 results because that is what the Israelis want. Conversely, if an Israeli looks for "777", they don't want to see some Apple Daily article written in a language that they cannot read.

Because the Boeing 777 is just a popular keyword, all other usages are overwhelmed. Being so skilled in Search Engine Optimization and Search Engine Marketing, Next Media obviously saw the point. So will they continue to promote democracy by pushing "777"? Or will they move on to some other catchphrase that will bring them more hits (and therefore money)? It is clear what their choice is.

It sounds bizarre to say that the Boeing 777 saved Carrie Lam. But if you know enough the new media game, you will know that this did happen. Of course, there are other issues such as political environment, personalities, etc. But those are minor factors compared to operations/propaganda considerations.

Next Media has historically thrived by fanning hatred. If they can't hype up "777", they will move onto the next topic in order to fan up hatred and controversies. What is a likely topic? How about demonizing the judges? That should raise a storm.

(SCMP) August 30, 2017.

The departing vice-chancellor of the University of Hong Kong on Wednesday rejected calls to oust Benny Tai Yiu-ting, the controversial legal scholar and co-founder of the 2014 Occupy protests.

Speaking to the media after officiating at the universitys inauguration ceremony for the last time, Professor Peter Mathieson revealed that he had recently received a handful of requests to remove Tai from the institutions law faculty. The vice-chancellor did not identify who sent the letters, but said he had read them, and respected the authors opinions.

I read these letters and dont agree with them all and I dont expect to agree with everybody, he said. We have our procedures for taking actions against students and staff if we think they infringe the regulations of the university. But, we are not a surrogate courtroom. The court has its own opportunity to make decisions about guilt or innocence and we respect those decisions.

The vice-chancellors remarks came as pro-establishment legislator and former Law Society president Junius Ho Kwan-yiu stepped up pressure on the university to sack Tai. Ho had earlier written to the university council chairman Professor Arthur Li Kwok-cheung to ask for Tai to be removed. Ho also organised an online petition to call for his sacking.

Ho accused Tai, as a law lecturer, of misleading students and of taking the lead to break the law, referring to Tais Occupy protests in 2014, in which the law lecturer asked people to stage sit-ins in Central to block the roads and force Beijing to give Hong Kong universal suffrage.

According to Hos office, the online campaign, which was launched at about 11pm on Tuesday, had collected more than 23,000 signatures as of 6pm Wednesday. Ho had aimed to collect about 40,000 signatures.

Earlier this month, the Court of Appeal sentenced three of the student leaders, Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Nathan Law Kwun-chung, and Alex Chow Yong-kang, to jail following a successful sentence review by the government.

In his judgment, Court of Appeal vice-president Wally Yeung Chun-kuen highlighted that certain people, including individuals of learning, advocate achieving justice by violating the law and under this slogan, they encourage others to break the law. He did not name names but it was widely believed he was referring to Tai.

Tai did not reply on Wednesday to requests for comment from the South China Morning Post. He earlier argued if it should be the victims that should be blamed, or the institution that created the evil.

(Wen Wei Po) September 2, 2017.

As of 11:30pm September 1, 2017, Junius Ho's online signature campaign has gathered 59,653 signatures, including 2,312 persons from the law sector and 5,880 from the education sector.

Internet comments:

- ( CAAR 4/2016) Here is Court of Appeal vice-president Wally Yeung's contribution to the judgment on the Civic Square 3:

2. I should reiterate that pursuant to the Basic Law and the Hong Kong Bill of Rights Ordinance, Hong Kong residents enjoy the freedoms of assembly, speech, procession, demonstration and expression of opinions. The basic freedoms conferred on Hong Kong residents are comprehensive and in no way lesser than the freedoms enjoyed by people of other advanced and free societies.

3. However, the aforementioned freedoms are not absolute or unrestricted; they are subject to the supervision of the law. Hong Kong residents are obliged to observe the laws that are in force in Hong Kong, and the exercise of the rights conferred by law is by no means a reason or excuse for doing illegal acts. Any act of protest or demonstration for which the police have not issued a Notice of No Objection, or in which violence or the threat of violence is used to express ones opinions, crosses the boundary of the peaceful exercise of the rights and enters the territory of unlawful activities; it becomes an unlawful act which interferes with the rights and freedoms of others.

4. The lawful exercise of rights conferred by law, and the protection of the enjoyment of rights and freedoms by others according to law, co-exist with each other without conflict, and should be a symbol of a civilised society which upholds the rule of law.

5. Acts done in the name of the free exercise of rights, but which are in substance acts which undermine public order and breach the peace, will throw society into chaos, impact seriously and adversely on its progress and development, and prevent others from exercising and enjoying the rights and freedoms to which they are entitled. If such acts cannot be effectively stopped, then all discussion about freedom and the rule of law will become empty talk.

6. In recent years, an unhealthy wind has been blowing in Hong Kong. Some people, on the pretext of pursuing their ideals or freely exercising their rights conferred by law, have acted wantonly in an unlawful manner. Certain people, including individuals of learning, advocate achieving justice by violating the law and, under this slogan, they encourage others to break the law. These people openly flout the law. Not only do they refuse to admit their lawbreaking activities are wrong, but they even go as far as regarding such activities as a source of honour and pride. It is unfortunate that such arrogant and conceited ways of thinking have influenced some young people and have caused them to engage as they please in activities that are damaging the public order and disruptive of the peace at assemblies, processions or demonstrations.

- (Silent Majority for HK) September 1, 2017.

In 2013, Hong Kong University associate professor Benny Tai wrote in a newspaper article to advocate achieving democracy through "civil disobedience." He told demonstrators to "illegally occupy the main streets of Central district". He said: "Simply put, I am looking to be arrested." He said that all participants must be ready to accept the legal consequences for breaking the law and to surrender themselves to the law enforcement department afterwards.

In order to incite more people to participate, the legal scholar Benny Tai minimized the possible legal consequences. He said that most people who violate the Public Order Ordinance are fined $1500 and the conviction record will be erased in three years.

But when the time came for him to "pay the bill," Benny Tai reneged. He said that he needed to study whether the charges against him were reasonable. This means that he will plead to minor charges but contest more serious charges.

Benny Tai has also denied that he was the original creator of the the phase 違法達義("achieving justice by violating the law"). He said that someone else must have fused his "civil disobedience" with "achieving justice by following the law".

- (Apple Daily) By Benny Tai. August 29, 2017.

Many people say that the "individual of learning" was me. I went over all my previous articles and found only one article with the term "achieving justice by violating the law."

I believe that many people have heard me talk about the four levels of progress of rule of law (ROLE Project)

Professor Benny Tai of University of Hong Kong, in his book 法治心:超越條文與制度的法律價值 The Passion for Rule of Law: Values beyond Legal Text and Legal Institutions, considers rule law in four levels of progress:

(1) Existence of law 有法可依

  • Laws of the legal system must satisfy certain qualitative requirements: generality, publicised, stability, clarity, non-retroactivity, non-contradictory, against impossibility, against arbitrariness and general congruence of law with social values.
  • Laws must also have covered major areas of human activities

(2) Regulation by law 有法必依

  • The sovereign adopts law as the major governing tool.
  • Officials are commanded to apply laws in governing though there is still only internal mechanism to ensure officials compliance with law.
  • Public order is basically maintained.
  • Disputes in the society are mainly resolved through peaceful and legal means.

(3) Limitation from law 以法限權

  • Law imposes external limits on the exercise of governmental powers through various channels including limitation by separation, constitutional limitation, administrative limitation, judicial limitation, political limitation and social limitation.
  • The government and its officials and agents are accountable under the law.
  • Corruption must have been substantially contained.
  • Competent, independent, and ethical adjudicators, attorneys or representatives provide access to justice.

(4) Justice through law 以法達義

  • Law serves justice of different conceptions including procedural justice, civil rights justice, social justice and deliberative justice (the ability for public to meaningfully participate in the law making process).

"Limitation from law" can at most make the government rule in accordance with the law, but the law may not be able achieve justice. When this happens, citizens will use civil disobedience to move the rule of law forward until they can get "justice through law." From hence came the idea of "achieving justice by violating the law."

I am not the original creator of the notion of "achieving justice by violating the law." But I noted that somebody who quoted my theory on rule of law combined "civil disobedience" with "justice through law" to form "achieving justice by violating the law." I believe that the notion of "achieving justice by violating the law" is highly creative, and is destructive and threatening to an unjust system.

- (SCMP) Sacking Benny Tai would not achieve anything, just let him discredit himself. By Alex Ho. August 23, 2017.

Many pro-establishment figures want to see the back of Benny Tai Yiu-ting. At least one lawmaker says he should be sacked from the University of Hong Kong for poisoning young minds.

Former Bar Association chairman and senior counsel Paul Shieh Wing-tai said Tai, an associate law professor and Occupy Central co-founder, had a lot to answer for.

Thats true, but most likely, Tai will not be held accountable. As an academic, he is politically untouchable at HKU; he knows it and we know it. Thats why he still flouts his views before TV cameras.

To be fair, Tai is not the only one. His Occupy colleague, Chan Kin-man, is an associate sociology professor at Chinese University. Yet, somehow, Tai gets all the bad press.

There are good reasons not to target them for dismissal, both ethical and practical, at least for now. Universities, especially those with a long established tradition, are usually full of people with eccentric ideas who have never worked a day in the real world. Some of these ideas can be wacky and even pernicious. Controversies arise when they try to put those ideas into practice.

Tai and Chan have a peculiar idea of civil disobedience. The Occupy protests of 2014 and the Mong Kok riot of 2016have been the results. From the start, the Occupy movement didnt work out the way they had planned. So to what extent were they responsible?

Both are facing charges of causing a public nuisance for their roles in the 2014 street protests and will appear again in court next month. So their culpability is a matter for the court to decide. Without a court ruling against them, it would be difficult to launch administrative processes legally required at their universities to dismiss them.

But why did their idea catch on? They are a symptom, not the disease. Getting rid of them will solve nothing. That would just turn them into another cause celebre for the opposition and provide more excuses for student radicals to turn their campuses into battlefields. Tai and Chan are ideologues. You can argue with them and let them discredit themselves. Give them enough rope, they will.

Our universities have had enough political struggle and deserve calm to carry on with what they are supposed to do to teach, to learn and to research.

- (EJ Insight) Who can ensure a fair trial for Benny Tai? By SC Yeung. August 31, 2017.

Three years after the Occupy Central campaign, student leaders Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow are in jail for their roles in the democracy protests.

Now the pro-Beijing camp has shifted its focus to Benny Tai, a law professor at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) and a co-founder of the Occupy Central movement.

Recently, pro-Beijing lawmaker Junius Ho said he might seek an injunction to stop Tai from teaching at HKU. He posted on his social media page a letter to HKU to that effect.

In addition, Ho organized an online petition urging the public to support the sacking of Tai. The petition was peppered with questions such as do you want Hong Kong to face disturbance?, do you want students to be misled into breaking the law?, do you agree that law professors are inciting the public to break the law?

According to local newspapers, the online petition has drawn more than 30,000 signatures out of a target of 40,000, putting pressure on HKU to take action before Tai is proven guilty in court.

On Wednesday, outgoing vice chancellor Peter Mathieson, said that he had received a handful of requests to sack Tai. Mathieson did not say who sent the letters but said he had read them and respected their opinions but added he didnt agree with all of them.

We have our procedures for taking action against students and staff if we think they infringe the regulations of the university. But we are not a surrogate courtroom, Mathieson said. The court has its own opportunity to make decisions about guilt or innocence and we respect those decisions.

It seems that the pro-Beijing camp worked behind the scenes by mobilizing their supporters to write letters to press for the sacking of Tai. Thats what they can do to show their loyalty to the authorities before the court even makes a judgment.

In March, Tai and other participants in the Occupy campaign were charged by the police. Tai, together with the Rev. Chu Yiu-ming and Dr. Chan Kin-man, faces three counts including conspiracy to commit public nuisance, inciting others to commit public nuisance, and inciting others to incite others to commit public nuisance, starting from March 27, 2013, when they published their Occupy manifesto in local newspapers, until December 2, 2014, when they turned themselves into police custody during the Occupy campaign.

Given Tai and other participants joined the campaign by way of civil disobedience, they did prepare themselves for punishment including a jail term. But the pro-Beijing camp forgot that the court is yet to start hearing the case.

All those charged are presumed innocent until proven guilty. It is quite a dangerous precedent for Ho to ask HKU to remove Tai before he is proven guilty.

In fact, after the Court of Appeal accepted the governments request to give harsher punishment to the three student activists, the public expected Tai and other leaders to face imprisonment.

In the judgment that sentenced the student leaders to the jail, Justice Wally Yeung said that some people, including academics, promote slogans to encourage others to break the law. Yeung also said these people publicly express contempt of the law, [and] not only do they refuse to admit that their illegal activity is wrong, but they even view it as honorable or proud acts. These arrogant, self-righteous thoughts, unfortunately have an impact on some young people, causing them to casually commit acts which destroy public order and peace during gatherings or demonstrations. This case is a perfect example of this unhealthy trend.

Since Yeungs judgment has become a precedent for the lower courts, Tai and other leaders in the campaign could face a harsher punishment.

From a legal perspective, Yeungs judgment may not have political considerations but his example of unhealthy trend pointed the finger at Tai for his civil disobedience campaign.

There was no question that Tai and other activists would be involved in such social campaign three years ago to show their democratic advocacy. But bear in mind that whether they are guilty is determined by the courts, not by political figures or key opinion leaders on the internet.

Paul Shieh, former chairman of the Hong Kong Bar Association, said that civil disobedience is important because one day Hong Kong may have laws or systems that are so harsh that people have to resort to civil disobedience to oppose them.

However, Shieh was also critical of Tai and his interpretation of civil disobedience. He said that in 2015, there were a lot of people who took creative liberties with the idea of civil disobedience, and this included Tai. He said Tai has a lot to answer for.

Now that Tai is being labeled guilty before his case is heard, who can promise him and other activists that they will have a fair trial?

- (Silent Majority for HK) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. August 31, 2017.

School is starting. My friend's child was just accepted this year by the Hong Kong University School of Law. This was supposed to be a good thing, but the parents are despondent: "We have the sense that we are delivering a lamb into the tiger's mouth."

It is no wonder because the Hong Kong University School of Law has the Super Brainwashing Trio of Professor Johannes Chan, Associate Professor Benny Tai and Senior Lecturer Cheung Tat-ming, plus any number of lesser Yellow Ribbon teachers, alumni and fellow students. It will be hard for a freshman to elude this Big Brainwashing Machine.

Once upon a time, people admired the Hong Kong University School of Law. If you have a child studying there, everyone will say: "Awesome! Bright kid! Unlimited future!" But today, there is nothing left but insults and sighs. So when my friend said that his child is a Hong Kong University School of Law student, everybody offers sympathy for the tragedy.

Undeniably, Benny Tai contributed to the demise of the Hong Kong University School of Law from a Gold Standard into an Evil Cult. From the moment when he called out "Occupy Central has officially begun", he has educated several generations of brainwashed foot soldiers.

Recently Legislative Councilor Junius Ho Kwan-yiu wrote to the Hong Kong University as well as started a civilian signature campaign to ask the university not to let Benny Tai teach people to "achieve justice by violating the law." Ho said: "In January 2013, Benny Tai wrote in the Economic Journal to advocate civil disobedience. This is four years later. There was no way to stop his action for four years already. I think that this is regrettable and should not be allowed to go on."

We have almost forgotten that it has been four years already. During these four years, students have been brainwashed to become cannon fodder for democracy.

If a teacher were charged with rape, the school will suspect this teacher in order to protect the students. If a police officer were charged with criminal activities, the police force will suspend the police officer from law enforcement duties. By the same reasoning, if a law professor were charged with violating the law, do you think that he should continue to teach law?

School is starting. the Super Brainwashing Trio can't wait to get started. The Hong Kong University School of Law is holding an open course for young people, with the title of "Rule of Law and Hong Kong Society." It will be taught by Benny Tai beginning in September, covering: obeying the law; social stability; responsibilities and duties; judicial independence; fair trials; ...

Why is someone being charged with violating the law teaching you law? Why is someone who advocates violating the law teaching you to obey the law? Why is someone who criticizes the judges teaching you on judicial independence and fair trials? Why is someone who instigated the blocking of streets for 79 days teaching  you about social stability? ... What kind of course is this? What kind of education is this?

- (Headline Daily) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. August 31, 2017.

After the Civic Square 3 were sent off to jail, Benny Tai jumped out to cast doubts on the judges and their judgments. He pronounced that Rule of Law is Dead. Past and current chairpersons of the Hong Kong Bar Association came out to rebut him. Benny Tai fought back. And now former Chief Justice Andrew Li has come out to denounce Benny Tai ...

In the face of the barrage from these heavyweights, Benny Tai has gone quiet. Instead, God's spokesperson retired Archbishop Joseph Zen had popped out to criticize Andrew Li: "There is no evidence whatsoever for what he said ... climbing into Civic Square is actually an extremely moderate and symbolic action ... the judges did not seem to know what civil disobedience is ..."

Judges, barristers and solicitors are supposed to be cool, calm and collected people. But this catfight between the Archbishop and Chief Justice shows that everybody is upset.

Why? Because several so-called legal scholars wanted to interpret the law and direct the judges according to their own political proclivities. Now they can criticize CY Leung, they can criticize Carrie Lam, they can criticize Tung Chee-hwa, they can criticize the Chinese Communist Party and the judges and lawyers won't react. But when they move in to attack the professionalism and positions of the judges and lawyers, there will be a strong reaction.

Yesterday Hong Kong University vice-chancellor Peter Mathieson said that the Univesity has no right to interfere with what their teachers do outside the university. But when someone whom the entire legal field is up in arms against is teaching law at your university, does the University still not care? When the judges and lawyers parade out one after another to denounced your law professor for the preposterousness of his legal arguments, should the university still let him teach law to the future generation of lawyers and judges?

- (Hong Kong Free Press) August 30, 2017.

Hong Kong University Students Union President Wong Ching-tak said in his inauguration speech that he was given a definition of democracy by teachers in secondary school to allow him to tackle questions in a public exam. But when I got into this university, I learn[t] the truth that there is simply no definition [of] democracy, and you can only acquaint yourself with the concept if you start to comprehend the various interpretations.

Searching for the truth is particularly important when were now in a time of delusion and deception We are told that we are born intrinsically and essentially as Chinese, regardless of our cultural backgrounds and our sense of belonging. We are told that [the] separation of powers never existed in Hong Kong and the Legislative Council and the court should cooperate with the government.

And we are told that rule of law simply means abiding by the law, and civil disobedience to unjust laws is an unhealthy trend. We are now facing official narratives from the government that are full of lies and fabrication, he said.

So this is very important for us to search for the truth and learn the truth. Learn what democracy can be. What rule of law truly means. Learn what a nation is this is the only way that we stay who we are instead of becoming people that are obedient and subservient to the regime.

Wong also urged the students not to turn a blind eye to things that are not right, such as the fact that the University of Hong Kong council consists mostly of pro-government individuals from outside the school.

Wong said that students could choose to turn a blind eye to land policy issues, avoid criticising the government, and ignore that Chinese laws will be implemented in Hong Kong referring to the controversial joint checkpoint arrangement for the high-speed rail. Probably you will still be living fine in Hong Kong but then one day, the things that you take for granted will disappear.

Wong also told students that although Chief Executive Carrie Lam is an alumna of the university, so are activists Alex Chow, Edward Leung, Billy Fung, and Colman Li. Theyre the people we should be learning from.

- Students should not turn a blind eye to "things that are not right." I completely agree -- it was not right to occupy Central for 79 days! That is why I demand justice and I want it NOW!

- What can be learned from Alex Chow, Edward Leung, Billy Fung and Colman Li? If you try to "achieve justice by violating the law," you can be sent to jail. Has this lesson sunk in yet?

- What can be learned from Alex Chow, Edward Leung, Billy Fung and Colman Li? There are two types of "students leaders" -- those who lead the charge at the police, and those who tell others to charge at the police.

Alex Chow was Type I when he climbed the wall to get into Civic Square, and later he became Type II during the Siege of Government Headquarters.

Edward Leung was Type I at the Mong Kok riot, and he is Type II nowadays because his priority is not to be remanded to custody.

Billy Fung and Colman Li were Type I at the siege of the Hong Kong University Council and they are awaiting sentencing.

What can be learned from other prominent Hong Kong University student leaders? Former Student Union presidents Yvonne Leung and Althea Suen are Type II all-talk-but-no-action and have no legal troubles. And so is Wong Ching-tak so far.

- (Economic Times) August 31, 2017.

Question: A legislator has written to Hong Kong University as well as started an online signature campaign to demand Hong Kong University dismiss Benny Tai? What is your position?

Results (3,171 voters):
79%: Support dismissal
20%: Oppose dismissal
1%: No opinion

(SCMP) August 31, 2017.

One of two mainland Chinese hikers who prompted a major rescue operation after running into trouble on a Hong Kong cliff side in the middle of a raging storm has written an emotional letter to his saviours to apologise for all the trouble they caused.

The letter, in Chinese and addressed to the Fire Services Department and other relevant departments, said the pair would never forget the rescuers kindness and praised them for their professionalism.

The apology came after the hikers, a 31-year-old man and a 47-year-old woman, sparked public outrage for wasting valuable resources and endangering the lives of emergency personnel after they became stranded on Kowloon Peak while Severe Tropical Storm Pakhar was lashing Hong Kong last weekend.

The rescue operation took more than 24 hours, with 160 firefighters, 10 ambulances and 31 fire engines deployed to pluck them to safety from a steep slope dubbed suicide cliff.

Four firefighters had to use their raincoats as a makeshift tent and spend a night on the cliff side to keep the hikers alive.

A source involved in the exercise said the four at one point sent a Mayday signal, raising fears at the fire department that their lives were in danger.

The author of the letter, which was also posted on a popular Facebook page for firefighters, identified himself as the male hiker and recalled that his friend was unable to walk after she fell.

Thanks go to the members of the Fire Services Department who braved the wind and rain, regardless of their own safety, and led us away from that dangerous place, he wrote.

It is not an overstatement to say that you gave us our lives back. And it was achieved by you risking your own lives. We will never forget your kindness to us.

He admitted they should not have ventured out when the No 1 typhoon warning signal was already in force. They had to sit out the storm on the cliff side after it worsened and the signal was upgraded to No 8.

The peak they were climbing is the highest on the Kowloon Peninsula and is classed by hikers as advanced level.

We should have cancelled the plan. But we chose to go ahead, and, more stupidly, we chose a route we had never taken before.

The letter expressed their guilt and shame in front of all Hong Kong people.

As tourists, we not only used up valuable resources and gave trouble to the people of Hong Kong, but also, more importantly, we let so many firefighters risk their lives to save us. That made us feel too ashamed to face you.

The letter gave special thanks to the firemen who reached them on Saturday night and only left the cliff side on Sunday afternoon when the No 8 signal was lowered.

They accompanied us overnight, in wind and rain. Risking flash floods, they did not give us up ... Thank you is too light a phrase to express the profound gratitude we want to express.

The letter went on to state: [The rescuers] did not blame us. Instead, they tried all along to comfort us and give us confidence. The first fireman, upon reaching us, told us: There is no need to blame yourselves. The most important thing is that you are safe and OK.

The woman had to be stretchered to safety, posing huge difficulties for rescuers who had to battle gale force winds and torrential rain.

The pair were sent to hospital on Sunday evening and discharged the following day.

Firefighters unions have refrained from criticising the two, stating instead that their resources and efforts were never wasted when saving lives.

Einstein taught us: It's all relative.

The first point of comparison is with the Tai Mo Shan woman. She famously said to the Hong Kong police:  "We will be responsible for ourselves if we run into danger. Our lives belong to ourselves" and "It is your job to rescue people." 

The second point of comparison is the case of the two shy ex-pats (The Standard, September 1, 2017).

Firefighters early yesterday rescued two expatriate men who were trapped on Lion Rock.

The two - surnamed Smith, 28, and Thomas, 29 - were trapped on Wednesday evening when their ropes got caught on rocks as they were descending. Police received a call about 10.40pm and officers, firefighters and members of the high-angle rescue team, were dispatched to rescue them. The two climbers also turned on their torches to help the rescue team find them.

Firefighters spent about six hours before plucking the men to safety around 3am. Both were unhurt and refused to be sent to hospital.

To avoid photographers they asked the ambulancemen for blankets and masks and left in a police car.

Q1. Some people say: The Basic Law says that national law is not used in Hong Kong. Therefore, setting up a mainland port area inside the West Kowloon Station will be a violation of the Basic Law. Other people say: As long as the Central Government authorizes, Hong Kong can enact law to allow for a mainland port area under mainland law without violating the Basic Law. Which side do you agree with?

37.4%: Agree with the former
42.0%: Agree with the latter
4.8%: Neither
15.5%: Don't know/no opinion
0.4%: Refused to answer

Q2. Some people say: The Shenzhen Bay port ahead has operated co-location since 2007, and therefore there is a precedent for co-location in West Kowloon Station. Other people say: Co-location in Shenzhen Bay is completely different from that in West Kowloon Station and not comparable at all. Which side do you agree with?

39.7%: Agree with the former
43.4%: Agree with the latter
4.0%: Neither
12.5%: Don't know/no opinion
0.4%: Refused to answer

Q3. Some people say: The benefits of the High Speed Rail cannot be fully realized without co-location in the Hong Kong section. Other people say: The negative impact of not having Hong Kong law in a designated area of the West Kowloon Station far outweighs any High Speed Rail benefit. Which side do you agree with?

48.8%: Agree with the former
33.5%: Agree with the latter
5.2%: Neither
11.9%: Don't know/no opinion
0.6%: Refused to answer

Q4. There are two co-location proposals: One proposal is to have all the mainland laws applicable in the mainland port area. The other proposal is to have only the relevant mainland laws applicable in the mainland port area. Which do you support more?

12.3%: All mainland laws apply
47.4%: Only some mainland laws are applicable
7.4%: Support both
19.5%: Support neither
12.5%: Don't know/no opinion
0.6%: Refused to answer

Q5. If the final decision was to implement only some mainland laws, will you still support co-location? (Base: Those who answered "all mainland laws apply" in Q4)

67.1%: Yes
16.3%: No
5.9%: Half-half
6.8%: Don't know/no opinion
3.9%: Refused to answer

Q6. If the final decision was to implement all mainland laws, will you still support co-location? (Base: Those who answered "only some mainland laws are applicable" in Q4)

34.8%: Yes
46.4%: No
8.6%: Half-half
9.1%: Don't know/no opinion
1.0%: Refused to answer

Q12. If co-location is ultimately adopted, will you ride the High Speed Rail?

54.4%: Yes
22.6%: No
16.9%: Possibly
5.2%: Don't know/no opinion
0.8%: Refused to answer


- With respect to Q4-Q6, the government has stated that this is unworkable. Suppose that you insist that only mainland immigration/customs/quarantine laws are applicable in the port area and all other mainland laws are not applicable.

Consider a Xinjiang mass murderer uses a fake ID to get on the Beijing->Hong Kong High Speed Rail. He arrives in West Kowloon Station and is detected. He can be refused exit by the mainland immigration officer. But can he be arrested? His warrant was based upon the mainland criminal law code, and the mainland immigration/customs officers do not have the power to make arrests in Hong Kong. So they summon the Hong Kong Police. At which point, the suspect calls his lawyer to claim habeas corpus and apply for political asylum based upon religious persecution. There is no extradition arrangement between China and Hong Kong, so this man is either going to be free or else Hong Kong will have to hold him indefinitely until he agrees to return to mainland China.

But if all mainland laws are applicable in the West Kowloon Station, then this man can be arrested in the mainland port area and taken back to mainland China.

In Johannes Chan's hybrid co-location proposal, he solves this problem by placing co-location in Futian so that all mainland laws can apply. But the drawback is that it is inconvenient and time-wasting.

So Q4-Q6 are not matters for the public to state their preferences for. Co-location means having all mainland laws in the West Kowloon port area.

- Whether the citizens are ready or not, the Co-location Concern Group must continue to demonstrate and give the impression of popular opposition.

"Oppose Co-location"
Bicycle demonstration
Date: September 3 (Sunday)
Route: From Tai Wai to Tai Mei Tuk
Assembly Point: Tai Wai MTR Station Exit A
Time: 1:30pm

- Which genius picked the date when Tropical Cyclone (soon to be Typhoon) Mawar arrives in Hong Kong with a wind speed of 120 km/hr?

- (Oriental Daily) September 3, 2017. More than 20 people participated in the bicycle demonstration starting from Tai Wai.

(Hong Kong Free Press) How can Hong Kongs courts, govt, and media be so deaf to the global chorus of criticism? By Kent Ewing. August 28, 2017.

He died nearly 80 years ago and most of his theories have since been consigned to the rubbish bin, but Sigmund Freud, the polymath founder of psychoanalysis, certainly understood the stricken psyche of Hong Konga city currently so lost in the throes of denial that we appear to be living in an entirely different reality than the rest of the world.

How else to explain the self-protective fictions and delusions now being heaped upon us by our justice department, our representatives in the Legislative Council, our journalists andyeseven by our vaunted independent (?) judiciary and the barristers and solicitors who ply their trade in our courts of law.


As criticism and condemnation ring out around the globe over the recent court decision to jail the three most prominent student leaders of the 2014 Occupy movement for six to eight months, the reaction at home has been to circle the rhetorical and psychological wagons. This turning inward makes it so much easier to deny the obvious but unsettling truth that much of the rest of humanity now sees Hong Kong as a place where practising the wrong brand of politics can cost you your freedom.

But who cares what leaders in the US congress and European parliaments think? What do they know?

And why worry about an open letter denouncing the ruling signed by 25 distinguished political, legal and religious figures, including former British foreign secretary Sir Malcolm Rifkind, South Koreas Ambassador for International Human Rights, Jung-hoon Lee, and Cardinal Charles Maung Bo of Myanmar?

Most importantly, why listen to uninformed attacks in biased western media outlets such as that well-known tabloid rag, the New York Times? Fake news!

The big, bad world beyond the shores of Little Hong Kong is irredeemably confused and wrong-headed about our affairs. Foreigners with a distorted western mindset just dont understand: Here, when idealistic young people climb fences that arent supposed to be there in order to start embarrassing protests that we dont want to happen, they must be punished in accordance with our lawswhich, of course, can and do change any time the powers that be in Beijing want them to.

Thus, this is how we respond to the chorus of disapproval that followed the jailing of Joshua Wong Chi-fung, the 20-year-old international face of Hong Kongs beleaguered democracy movement, and his two Occupy Central compatriots, Nathan Law Kwun-chung, 24, and Alex Chow Yong-kang, 27:


Not to worry, the Freudian voices of denial console us. Everything will be fine. All we need is a little patriotic education.

The rest of the world is trying to tell us something; maybe we should listen.

Current Hong Kong judges are not going to comment in public. Their job is to adjudicate in accordance with the law; they don't need to get many more LIKE's in order to become Key Opinion Leaders. 

So far we know what three of them (Court of Appeal vice-president Mr Justice Wally Yeung Chun-kuen and Justices of Appeal Derek Pang Wai-cheong and Jeremy Poon Shiu-chor) think through their rulings on the cases of the Civic Square 3 and the North East New Territories 13. We also know what another three (Court of Final Appeal Chief Justice Geoggrey Ma Tao-Il, Justice Roberto Robeiro and Justice Joseph Fok think through their rulings on the case of DQ2.

But what about the legal profession? What they think about these judges and their rulings? Here is a summary for the Hong Kong Bar Association, the Law Society of Hong Kong, various past chairpersons of the Hong Kong Bar Association and one former Chief Justice.

Joint Statement of The Hong Kong Bar Association and The Law Society of Hong Kong in Response to Criticisms of Judicial Independence in Hong Kong

1. The Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society of Hong Kong note with great concern editorial comments and other opinions reported in some international and local media in respect of the Hong Kong Court of Appeals recent decisions in relation to applications for reviews of sentences in cases of unlawful assembly.

2. It is not the practice of the Hong Kong Bar Association or the Law Society of Hong Kong to comment on the merits of individual cases, which may be the subject of appeal, nor is it appropriate to do so.

3. We would, however, point out that the decisions by the Hong Kong Courts are made solely according to law upon applications by one party or the other. We see no indication otherwise in respect of the recent cases which have generated widespread comment. Whatever opinion one may hold about the appropriateness or otherwise of the sentences imposed, the individuals concerned were convicted and sentenced for crimes committed after having been accorded due process through the courts with proper access to legal representation.

4. Open and rational debate on the issues raised in individual cases is to be encouraged in a civil society.

5. However, unfounded comments that judicial decisions were made or influenced by political considerations originating outside Hong Kong are unjustified and damaging to our legal system, and to Hong Kong as a whole.

6. We repeat what the Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society of Hong Kong said on previous occasions:

one must be careful and cautious when commenting on a court judgment and has to take into account the impact of such comment on the integrity and independence of the Judiciary. The bedrock to the rule of law in Hong Kong is the trust and confidence of the public and the international community towards our judges and the judicial system. Any inappropriate comment could fuel baseless and unnecessary suspicion on judicial independence, and may undermine the confidence of the public and the international community in the rule of law in Hong Kong....

We are fully confident that all judges in Hong Kong are capable of and will continue to abide by their judicial oath to uphold the Basic Law, bear allegiance to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the Peoples Republic of China, serve the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region conscientiously, dutifully, in full accordance with the law, honestly and with integrity, safeguard the law and administer justice without fear or favour, self-interest or deceit. We will do our utmost to safeguard judicial independence in Hong Kong.(extracted from a statement issued by the Hong Kong Bar Association in February 2016 in response to statements that our courts passed unduly lenient sentences in public order cases)

The Rule of Law, as well as an independence and professional Judiciary, are widely respected by the Hong Kong community. These are also regarded highly by the international community to be the cornerstone for economic success of Hong Kong. This high level of respect and the confidence in the Hong Kong judicial system are instilled through long judicial history, hard earned tradition and constitutional entrenchment, as well as the continual efforts of the distinguished and professional judges. This should not and can never be undermined or compromised or be dragged into the political arena.(extracted from a statement issued by the Law Society of Hong Kong in September 2015)

(Hong Kong Economic Times) August 22, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association former chairman Paul W.T. Hsieh said that those civil disobedience practitioners who were sent to jail "got what they asked for." He questioned why this is being called "political prosecution" and why the courts are being accused of collusion. He said that these protestors would get more respect if they stick to their original intentions and "fearlessly" keep their promises.

(Apple Daily) August 20, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association former chairman and Civic Party current chairman Alan Leong posted on Facebook that Paul Hsieh evaded the fact that the original magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngan imposed light sentences on the Civic Square 3 by reason of law. Leong added that he does not agree that this was a "political prosecution" and he agreed that the Court of Appeal should not be accused of political considerations in determining the sentence. But this does not mean that the people of Hong Kong should accept Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen's relentless pursuit of the three idealistic, responsible and selfless young men. And it does not mean that one cannot point out possible errors committed by the Court of Appeal.

(Apple Daily) August 20, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association former chairman Ronny Tong Ka-wah said that he does not see the various defendants as "prisoners of conscience" or "political prisoners." He said that those assertions are completely baseless. He asked why anyone would think that democracy requires the destruction of rule-of-law?

Tong said that any discussion of the court rulings should consider whether rule-of-law has completely disintegrated in Hong Kong such that all the judges are under the control of the Central Government. After all, the international community (especially the Southeast Asian countries) has always considered the Hong Kong judiciary to be independent and the most perfect. So Tong is perplexed as to how the Hong Kong judiciary could suddenly have disintegrated overnight according to these critics.

Tong said that accusing judges of being under political control may constitute contempt of court. But if these critics are jailed, they will say that this is the proof of the suppression of freedom and democracy that they have been talking about. Tong said that we can disagree with the court rulings, or even think that they are wrong, but our discussion must be based upon evidence and reasoning. If you just accuse all the judges as being political stooges, this is not something Hong Kong can bear.

(HK01 ) August 26, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association former chairperson Winnie Tam said on radio today that the ruling by the Court of Final Appeal has clearly and adequately given the reasoning.

As for the Secretary of Justice Rimsky Yuen going after the Civic Square 3 for political reasons, Winnie Tam said that she understands that some people are sympathetic towards the three young men. But she said that what Yuen did was fair under the law and he cannot be said to have evil intentions. As for Yuen overruling the Director of Public Prosecutions, Tam said the disclosure was unfair and that Yuen is the ultimate decision-maker. "I don't see anything wrong."

As for calling the three defendants "political prisoners," Tam thinks that this is going too far. She said that a political prisoner is a dissident who is being punished by the authorities for some completely different crime. She asked citizens to respect the courts. "You cannot just applaud when you like a verdict, but say that the judges have been turned 'red' when you dislike a verdict." She said that such talk is "unacceptable."

- Suppose that Rimsky Yuen did overrule the Director of Public Prosecutions as the leak says. That is, the Director of Public Prosecutions said that the government has no chance or that the government should avoid this type of case for political reasons, but Yuen held the opposite opinion.

If the government loses its case, then Yuen made a bad political judgment.

But now the government wins its case. This shows that Yuen was right and the Director of Public Prosecutions was wrong. So why is Yuen still being second-guessed?

- (Hong Kong Economic Journal) August 29, 2017.

Legislative Councilor Dennis Kwok Wing-hang  wrote that "foreign media reported that the Director of Public Prosecutions recommended not to file a judicial review against the three defendants, but Secretary of Justice Rimsky Yuen disagreed and insisted upon a judicial revew ...

Please note:

1. All discussions within the six departments of the Justice Department must be kept confidential to avoid obstruction of justice!

2. The foreign media (note: why didn't Dennis Kwok have the courage to name The New York Times?) got it from whom? Who leaked the details of a case to the outside world? Or was the whole thing fabricated for political purposes? As a legal professional and a legislative councilor, Dennis Kwok should be investigating the veracity of the report.

3. The foreign media did not enumerate the reasons for objecting to a judicial review. Well, I believe that this is going to one of the following four reasons:

A. He/she was afraid that the pan-democrats would launch political attacks against the move.

B. He/she thinks that the legal basis is weak and therefore the chances of losing are high. So the Department of Justice should not risk its reputation and authority over this case.

C. He/she offered some weak legal reasons for not proceeding with the judicial reviews, and he/she was voted down by her colleagues who informed the Secretary for Justice to proceed.

D. He/she made certain statements in the group discussion that showed political preferences and lack of neutrality. Therefore the team vetoed his/her recommendation not to proceed.

- (The Stand News ) September 2, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association former chairperson Winnie Tam said on Cable TV that 99.9% of those who wrote the reports in the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, etc have not studied the judgment of the Court of Appeal in the High Court. They have also not tried to learn about the judicial system in Hong Kong. Therefore the Hong Kong legal sector must "make a huge response in order to counter-attack."

(HK01 ) August 26, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association current chairman Paul T.K. Lam said that some people are critical the Court of Appeal for its ruling on the Civic Square 3, including whether political influence was present and whether the judiciary has come under Central Government influence and lost its independence.

Lam emphasized that "all criticisms about lack of judicial independence and lack of integrity of the judges are inappropriate and problematic." Lam said that rule-of-law is precious and needs to be protected. "Reputation is of paramount importance" and unfounded criticisms will make people believe it and influence the outside world's perception of rule of law in Hong Kong. Citizens may also lose respect and confidence in the courts. Lam is worried that this may become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Lam said that the Joint Statement of the Bar Association and the Law Society emphasized that they saw the court rulings as being based upon applications of the law and "not on factors outside the law or legal reasoning." Lam said that the two organizations had to be concerned professionally about outside criticisms of the Court of Appeal's rulings.

(SCMP) August 27, 2017.

Former Chief Justice Andrew Li Kwok-nang told This Week In Asia: The allegation that the Court of Appeals judgment on the sentences for the demonstrators was politically motivated was totally without any foundation. Such an allegation can have the effect of undermining public confidence in the independence of the judiciary. It was an irresponsible allegation which should never have been made.

He speaks for many in the legal profession who, whether they agree with the jail terms or not, see no evidence of political interference and regard such suggestions as absurd.

Not a single one of them thought that the rulings were not in accordance with the law. So everybody in the entire legal sector is in self-denial.

- Worse yet, none of these people concurred with the New York Times that Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow should get the Nobel Peace Prize.

- If you insist that that rule of law is dead in Hong Kong because the courts are now controlled by the Chinese Communists, then there are some logical consequences:

The first question is: How extensive is the rot? So far, we know that six judges are Communist stooges: Court of Appeal vice-president Mr Justice Wally Yeung Chun-kuen and Justices of Appeal Derek Pang Wai-cheong and Jeremy Poon Shiu-chor because of their rulings on the cases of the Civic Square 3 and the North East New Territories 13, plus Court of Final Appeal Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma Tao-Il, Justice Roberto Ribeiro and Justice Joseph Fok because of their rulings on the case of the DQ2.

Here is the roster of the Court of Final Appeal:

We now know that Geoffrey Ma is a Chinese Communist stooge.

We now know that Roberto Ribeiro and Joseph Fok are Chinese Communist stooges.

There are 4 Australians and 8 Brits among the 12 Non-Permanent Judges of the Court of Final Appeal. How many of these are Chinese Communist stooges? All of them? Or just some of them? If just some of them, then which ones?

So the second question is: How do you identify the Chinese Communist stooges and purge them from the judiciary?

Previously, Hong Kong did not have anyone like the courageous US Senator Joseph McCarthy to warn us about Chinese Communist infiltration into the Hong Kong judiciary. Those Chinese Communist infiltrators from Australia and United Kingdom were meticulously covering their tracks so that no one was aware of the scope of the infiltration before August 15, 2017. Therefore reviewing their past rulings will not give clear indication about who is a Chinese Communist stooge.

So the best approach is to apply a litmus test: Judges at all levels from the Court of Final Appeal down will be given the Joshua Wong-Nathan Law-Alex Chow case file and ask: "How would you rule?"

If you rule to overturn the ruling of magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngan in the manner of Justices Wally Yeung Chun-kuen, Derek Pang Wai-cheong and Jeremy Poon Shiu-chor, you are a Chinese Communist stooge and you will be removed from office. All your previous rulings will be reviewed for similar biases.

If you rule to uphold the ruling of magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngan, it does not mean that you are clean because you can be lying for this litmus test. You will be given a temporary respite to stay at your post, conditional upon your future rulings giving maximum weight to the noble ideals of pro-democracy/pro-freedom activists and minimum weight to the actual crimes. Failure in any case would mean instant removal from office.

In this manner, we will demonstrate to the western world and the western media that rule-of-law is alive and well in Hong Kong, and therefore international investors can continue to pour their investments here.

At this point, I will stop. I am only joking here. If such a litmus test were applied, the judiciary would resign en masse because this is the worst attack on rule of law ever.

- The Wall Street Journal article on August 17, 2017 was titled "Hong Kongs Political Prisoners: China forces local judges to send democratic activists to jail." You read through the article to find out how China forces the local judges to do their bidding and you find ... nothing. The closest evidence that was offered was that Zhang Dejiang showed upon in May and "said that the judiciary is subordinate to the executive branch and judges should 'learn the Basic Law.' Other officials criticized Hong Kong's use of foreign judges, who are supposedly too sympathetic to separatist elements." How do you leapfrog from the statements of Zhang and other officials to them "forcing the local judges to send democratic activists to jail"?

- What is the nature of the force used? Tickling their feet? Stapling their thighs? Threatening to break their fingers? Threatening to kill their families? What?

- In the newspaper industry, the stories are written by reporters and the headlines are written by editors. Very often, the headlines go far beyond what is supportable by the contents in the stories. This is one case. The headline will gain a lot of clicks but there is nothing in the story.

- With due respect, I cannot imagine Lord Hoffmann and the other 17 non-permanent Australian/British judges of the Court of Final Appeal will pay any attention to what Chinese Communist apparatchik Zhang Dejiang have to say and give up their lifetime accomplishments, reputations and legacies?

- (Wen Wei Po) September 4, 2017.

Wong On-yin's Facebook

Judges were always only just one part of rule-of-law. Only Hongkongers think that judges are sacrosanct and the Chief Justice is like a God to be much adored. Therein lies the root of the troubles. Suddenly now Hongkongers have discovered tht the God-almighty Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma Tao-li is an accessory to the tyrants and not the Guardian of Hong Kong. What is to be done? What else except to rise up and bring him down. There is no monarchy in politics, so there shouldn't be a monarchy in the judiciary either.

Where do Hong Kong judges come from? This is a self-breeding system in which respect is not automatically granted. In the past, the judges are respected because they act fairly and reflect the social values of the majority in an undemocratic system. But this is not automatic. There is no guarantee, not even a monitoring impeachment system, that this will always be the case. If we do not rise up and bring down Geoffrey Ma, then nobody can save Hong Kong.

I am not calling on everybody to use force. That would be uncivilized. But showing the facts, talking reason and demonstrating in the streets are non-violent resistance. So why not? Today, Hong Kong lacks most of all those who have studied law to come out and denounce Geoffrey Ma and the Court of Appeal judges. There are plenty of people in the legal sector who want citizens not to consider right versus wrong but only to adore rule-of-law. If we don't wake up today, there will be more cruel and excessive abuse of judicial power tomorrow.

Photo of Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen, Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma and Hong Kong Bar Association chairperson Winnie Tam, with their faces crossed out and one big "Fuck You!!!" underneath.

- Contempt of court is an offense under common law. In the past, insulting a judge or otherwise acting to interfere with the judicial process is punishable by a maximum of 2 years in jail or $5,000 fine.

- (EJ Insight) How to preserve confidence in our courts. By Benny Tai. September 5, 2017.

The fact that the Court of Appeal has overruled the magistrates court over a trespassing case involving three student leaders and sentenced them to jail has sparked a heated controversy.

A lot of people have raised doubts about the new verdict, and there is a widespread suspicion that the judges of the Court of Appeal could have been influenced by political factors.

Amid grave public concern, several heavyweights in the legal sector, including former chief justice Andrew Li Kwok-nang, quickly rallied to the defense of the court, asserting that public suspicions about the motives of the judges are completely unfounded and unjustified.

I dont intend to argue whether the judges of the Court of Appeal could have been subject to political pressure in this particular case. While I agree with these heavyweights that upholding the authority of the judiciary is instrumental in maintaining the rule of law, I do feel compelled to take issue with their notion that the public should never ever doubt the independence and impartiality of our judges.

In fact, the so-called authority of our courts of law stems entirely from the righteousness of the decisions it made; whether or not there is public criticism of our judges is irrelevant.

As long as our courts can convince the public that the rulings are fair and just, and that judges only take into account nothing but legal factors when making their decisions, the public will have trust in our judiciary.

If the public senses that our judges arent making their decisions fairly and impartially, they will inevitably have doubts about their motives. And even though the courts could reduce members of the public to silence temporarily by threatening them with contempt of court charges, silence does not mean the public trusts the courts.

It often takes years, if not decades, to build the authority of and public trust in our courts, but at the same time, it only takes a very short amount of time to ruin everything.

That said, I believe members of the legal profession who are truly committed to defending the authority of our judiciary and our rule of law should speak out against the courts over mistakes and call for immediate corrective actions rather than pointing the finger at the average individuals who blow the whistle on the questionable decisions by our judges.

At the end of the day, the authority of our courts rests upon public confidence in our judicial system, not public silence over its wrong and unjust rulings.

Turning a blind eye to an unjust decision made by the court might not have instant repercussions on society, but if we let things continue this way, judges may think they can disregard the oversight by fellow legal professionals. There could be more unjust decisions. Eventually, that will take an irreversible toll on public confidence in our judiciary.

Meanwhile, I notice that there has been a prevailing notion among the legal profession that our judges are always incorruptible and able to resist any form of external interference so much so that public oversight of our judiciary is unnecessary, and that nobody should ever have even the slightest shred of doubt about our judges impartiality and judgment.

However, I find their excessive and unquestioning confidence in our judges incomprehensible and even irrational.

Like everyone else, judges are humans, and as long as you are human, you cant be completely immune to things like political pressure, or the temptation of using your power to serve your own agenda. And that is why judges need oversight.

And as rule of law is among the most treasured core values of Hong Kong, I believe it is the responsibility of all citizens, not just the legal professionals, to uphold and defend the rule of law by staying vigilant and not hesitating to call out unjust or questionable decisions.

Perhaps members of our legal sector should focus more on how to restore public confidence in our judicial system rather than criticizing those who have the courage to cast doubts on the questionable decisions by our courts.

- At this time, there is no evidence whatsoever that any judge is a Chinese Communist stooge. Not even Civic Party chairman Alan Leong would say so. Senator Joseph McCarthy was at least waving a piece of paper which he said had the names of 205 (or 57, or 81, or 10 at various other times) State Department employees who were members of the Communist Party USA.

- Alan Leong knows that if he names any judge as a Chinese Communist stooge without evidence, it will be cause for a Barristers Disciplinary Tribunal for professional misconduct leading to suspension from practice. The New York Times/The Wall Street Journal have no such fears.

- Alan Leong is in a quandary. If he accepts the thesis that rule-of-law is dead in Hong Kong, then the next step is armed revolution to sweep aside all branches of the government (executive, legislative and judicial). His own law practice would be wiped out because there won't be any courts left.

The farthest Alan Leong has gone is to say that Wally Yeung's language in the ruling was emotional and that makes him unfit for the office. "The dead branch on a tree should be lobbed off." That is a subjective opinion based upon a piece of evidence. But he will not come out and call Yeung a Chinese Communist running dog, because there is no evidence.

- The most concrete evidence presented so far is that Court of Appeal vice-president Mr Justice Wally Yeung Chun-kuen attended the 2015 Christmas cocktail party held by The Small and Medium Law Firms Association of Hong Kong (see Lam, Lee and Lai Solicitors and Notaries) with food, drinks and music for several hundred people including Chief Executive CY Leung and Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen, and the Association's founding president Maggie Chan Man-ki was the legal counsel for the plaintiff Chiu Luen Public Light Bus to clear the protestors off the streets of Mong Kok (see SCMP). This is not even tenuous.

- An open letter denouncing the ruling signed by 25 distinguished political, legal and religious figures, including former British foreign secretary Sir Malcolm Rifkind, South Koreas Ambassador for International Human Rights, Jung-hoon Lee, and Cardinal Charles Maung Bo of Myanmar?

- The 64-page ruling has been published only in Chinese (see Do these 25 distinguished political, legal and religious figures read Chinese legalese? Or did they denounce a ruling that they never read? Or did they get a summary from Voice of America?

- Here is Court of Appeal vice-president Wally Yeung's contribution to the judgment:

1. I have considered the judgment drawn up by Poon JA and the multitude of cases cited by him. I concur with his judgment as well as his reasons for judgment.

2. I should reiterate that pursuant to the Basic Law and the Hong Kong Bill of Rights Ordinance, Hong Kong residents enjoy the freedoms of assembly, speech, procession, demonstration and expression of opinions. The basic freedoms conferred on Hong Kong residents are comprehensive and in no way lesser than the freedoms enjoyed by people of other advanced and free societies.

3. However, the aforementioned freedoms are not absolute or unrestricted; they are subject to the supervision of the law. Hong Kong residents are obliged to observe the laws that are in force in Hong Kong, and the exercise of the rights conferred by law is by no means a reason or excuse for doing illegal acts. Any act of protest or demonstration for which the police have not issued a Notice of No Objection, or in which violence or the threat of violence is used to express ones opinions, crosses the boundary of the peaceful exercise of the rights and enters the territory of unlawful activities; it becomes an unlawful act which interferes with the rights and freedoms of others.

4. The lawful exercise of rights conferred by law, and the protection of the enjoyment of rights and freedoms by others according to law, co-exist with each other without conflict, and should be a symbol of a civilised society which upholds the rule of law.

5. Acts done in the name of the free exercise of rights, but which are in substance acts which undermine public order and breach the peace, will throw society into chaos, impact seriously and adversely on its progress and development, and prevent others from exercising and enjoying the rights and freedoms to which they are entitled. If such acts cannot be effectively stopped, then all discussion about freedom and the rule of law will become empty talk.

6. In recent years, an unhealthy wind has been blowing in Hong Kong. Some people, on the pretext of pursuing their ideals or freely exercising their rights conferred by law, have acted wantonly in an unlawful manner. Certain people, including individuals of learning, advocate achieving justice by violating the law and, under this slogan, they encourage others to break the law. These people openly flout the law. Not only do they refuse to admit their lawbreaking activities are wrong, but they even go as far as regarding such activities as a source of honour and pride. It is unfortunate that such arrogant and conceited ways of thinking have influenced some young people and have caused them to engage as they please in activities that are damaging the public order and disruptive of the peace at assemblies, processions or demonstrations.

7. This case is an excellent example of the influence of the trend that is mentioned. All three respondents are backbone members of young people organisations. In the name of their organisations, having obtained a Notice of No Objection from the police, they organised an assembly at the section off Tim Mei Road outside the Forecourt of the Central Government Offices (Forecourt) on the night of 26 September 2014, and successfully attracted the participation of hundreds of citizens, especially young people and students. With full knowledge that the assembly had to end at 10 pm, they conferred and reached a consensus in advance that they would force their way into the Forecourt at the conclusion of the assembly, claiming that they were going to recapture the Civic Square.

8. Before 26 September 2014, the Hong Kong Federation of Students (HKFS) had made two applications to the Administration Wing, requesting the opening-up of the Civic Square for public activities from 23 September to early October 2014. However, these applications were rejected. Therefore, at the time the three respondents reached the above consensus, they had full knowledge that the Civic Square would be closed and guarded by security guards.

9. The three respondents should also have been aware that many, especially young people, would participate in the assembly on 26 September 2014. Obviously, it was their wish to rely on the participation of these people to achieve their purpose of recapturing the Civic Square by sheer force in numbers.

10. The three respondents must have been aware that when crowds of people forced their way into the Civic Square, clashes between them and the security guards guarding the Civic Square would be inevitable, and that casualties as well as damage to property were highly likely.

11. The three respondents had at the pre-action meeting discussed the criminal liability of the participants, and subsequently distributed copies of Points to Note When Under Arrest to them. This made clear their awareness that their planned action was unlawful, but they still participated in and/or incited others, especially young students, to take part in the unlawful action. It was extremely irresponsible of the three respondents to call upon or incite young students to violate the law, the consequences of which may become lifelong regrets of these young students.

12. The claim by the three respondents that they were going to recapture the Civic Square by way of the zero-violence principle of peace, rationality and non-violence was nothing but empty talk, something to which they paid lip service and a slogan by which they deluded themselves and others.

13. In the face of clear and undeniable evidence from the prosecution, the three respondents had refused to plead guilty. In fact, to date, they still refuse to admit that they had done anything wrong. They argue that they had acted out of their concerns for social issues, as well as their passion for politics and ideals. The assertion that they are remorseful is strained and totally unconvincing. There is no conflict between their concerns for social issues and passion for politics and ideals on the one hand, and the need for them to abide by the law on the other.

14. I concur with the judgment of Poon JA. The offences committed by the three respondents are serious for which deterrence is justified.

15. I am of the view that given the nature of these offences, the mode in which they were committed and the attitude of the three respondents, sentencing them by way of a community service order or suspended sentence is in contravention of sentencing principles; it is acutely inadequate and cannot possibly reflect the gravity of the offences.

16. In my judgment, the only appropriate sentence is a short term of immediate imprisonment. I have to emphasize that if the sentences imposed by this court do not suffice to deter similar offences, the court may need to resort to sentences of even greater deterrent effect to uphold the dignity of the rule of law.

17. It gives me absolutely no pleasure in coming to a sentence that would send young people with aspirations and ideals to prison. However, this court is duty-bound to send a clear message to the public that when taking part in assemblies, processions, demonstrations or like activities, in the free exercise of their rights, participants must abide by the law and must not cause any damage to public order and public peace. All acts of violence, especially acts of violence which involve the charging at or assaulting law-enforcement officers and personnel responsible for maintaining order, will be met by a substantial sentence; otherwise there will be no social accord or social progress, and citizens rights and freedoms as safeguarded by law may altogether vanish.

- (The New York Times) Like Andrei Sakharov, Vaclav Havel, Auug San Suu Kyi and so many dissidents before them, the men were hit with a bogus charge ("unlawful assembly") ...

This shows the lack of familiarity with the details of the trials. Before the incident even began, the defendants said that this was civil disobedience which involves breaking the law in order to achieve justice. That is, they knew that they were going to break the law. The facts around the case were never in dispute, as all parties accept that the law had been broken as recorded on videos from surveillance cameras and media coverage. "Unlawful assembly" comes from British law, not Chinese Communist law. You can go tell the Brits that they have a bogus law. The central debate was about the relative importance of the motives in determining the sentence. The magistrate in the original trial gave high weight to the nobility of motives, and therefore imposed only community service/suspended jail sentences. The defendants did not even appeal the sentences. The government appealed to the Court of Appeal which ruled that violent acts should be penalized more severely for deterrence.

- (SCMP) Democracy and human rights are vital for the rule of law and so is legality. By Ken Macdonald. September 4, 2017.

The rule of law is not a moveable feast. You cant invoke it when it suits you and then spurn it when it doesnt. It combines democracy, human rights and legality. The first two are easy: everyone believes in democracy and human rights, dont they? But what of legality? This is much harder and poses a greater challenge, a greater test of loyalty to principle.

In a rule-of-law system, it is obviously not just the law that counts. After all, a tyranny can easily create oppressive laws to build dictatorship. So the law must be borne out of democratic accountability and loyalty to human rights. Thats how it earns respect.

But the corollary is that laws legitimised in this way must be carefully respected. This is because in a rule-of-law system, the organised abuse of law is a form of tyranny in itself, an attack upon the rules that exist to grant ultimate protection for rights. This is what legality means and, however hard it may sometimes be, loyalty to legality is fundamental to showing fealty to the rule of law.

In the UK, as in Hong Kong, a prosecutor may appeal against a sentence he believes to be unduly lenient. The UK attorney general sometimes invokes this power and the English Court of Appeal from time to time increases sentences at his urging. The proceedings will always take place in public, with a represented defendant, before the senior, independent judiciary. It is a process of open justice, respectful of rights and according to law.

In Hong Kong, the situation is no different. Here, the secretary for justice may appeal against a sentence he believes to have been manifestly inadequate. If he does so, the case will be considered in the Hong Kong Court of Appeal, before senior, independent judges, sitting in public. The defendant will be fully represented. Again, this process unfolds strictly according to law.

Judges, both in the UK and in Hong Kong, sometimes make decisions that are unpopular with some sections of the public. Usually, if the court had made the opposite decision, a different section of the public would be outraged.

This is why it is fortunate that judges pay no attention to public opinion when they adjudicate. It is easy to see that if courts judged according to public feeling, a frightening new form of tyranny would be born: mob rule. There would be no rule of law at all.

Of course, it is perfectly fine for people to take issue with the rulings of judges and to express their disagreement forcefully. That is what free speech means: the right to express yourself freely. And judges have thick skins. But when disagreement strays into attacking a legitimate and universally recognised process of law, such as a prosecutors right of appeal, or the personal integrity of the judges deciding the case, it is not really that legal process or those judges being attacked, it is the rule of law itself. People engaged in these rhetorical assaults risk undermining the very values they claim to defend.

An invasion of a secure area adjacent to the UK Parliament, accompanied by damage and assaults against security staff, could easily result in the English courts imposing prison terms upon the perpetrators. If the accused somehow escaped with non-custodial sentences, and the UK attorney general appealed on the grounds of undue leniency, it is perfectly possible that the English Court of Appeal would revoke the original sentences and send the defendants to prison.

Hong Kong faces many challenges, including challenges of democratic process and human rights, as this unpredictable century unfolds. So to traduce that institution most attached to the rule of law in Hong Kong, its senior judiciary, is a tragic error. To suggest, as some have done, including international NGOs who should know better, that the recent ruling of the Hong Kong Court of Appeal is an attack upon democracy, is no more than self-professed supporters of the rule of law trimming their attachment to legality simply because, in the political exigencies of a particular case, it suits them to do so.

But those who believe that support for the rule of law can be contingent may find out that others feel the same way. It is a slippery path best avoided.

[Ken Macdonald, QC, is a former director of public prosecutions for England and Wales]

- (EJ Insight) Jailing of activists: Foreign critics undermine HK rule of law. By Frank Ching. September 4, 2017.

More than 20 years ago, in the run-up to Hong Kongs handover to China, rumors were rife that the city was finished. Fortune magazine published the infamous The Death of Hong Kong article. Books appeared with such titles as The Fall of Hong Kong, The End of Hong Kong and The Last Days of Hong Kong.

Fortunately, that prediction turned out to be dismally wrong. In the last 20 years, Hong Kong has done quite well and its residents rights and freedoms have been largely protected.

To a large extent this was due to the rule of law, underpinned by an independent judiciary, a legacy of British rule. This differentiates Hong Kong from mainland China, where the Communist Party controls the courts.

But this system is now being undermined, ironically by people in the West who mean Hong Kong well.

Many of them, suspicious of China and its attempts to control Hong Kong, jumped to the conclusion that Beijing had successfully brought the Hong Kong government and the judiciary to heel after the Court of Appeal imposed custodial sentences on three activists, Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow.

After the imposition of prison sentences ranging from six to eight months for illegal assembly, there were immediate charges of political persecution by human rights groups and others. A group of 20 international figures, including former British Foreign Secretary Malcolm Rifkind, signed a joint statement calling the decision an outrageous miscarriage of justice and a death knell for Hong Kongs rule of law and basic human rights, and a severe blow to the principles of one country, two systems on which Hong Kong was returned to China 20 years ago.

The final charge that the judgment violated the one country, two systems formula made it clear that the signatories saw Chinas hand behind the courts decision. That is to say, in their minds the judges, instead of applying legal principles, had bowed to Chinese political pressure.

It is worth noting that the judgment of which so many have been so critical wasnt available in English until two weeks later. That is to say, the critics did not bother to read the legal reasoning provided by the judges for their conclusion that the trial magistrate had erred.

Fortunately, and significantly, the Hong Kong legal community, which was been at the forefront in the struggle for maintaining the rule of law and against Chinese political interference, has come out strongly in support of the courts decision against foreign critics.

The Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society of Hong Kong issued a rare joint statement. In it, they said that decisions by the Hong Kong Courts are made solely according to law upon applications by one party or the other.

We see no indication otherwise in respect of the recent cases which have generated widespread comment, they declared, adding: Unfounded comments that judicial decisions were made or influenced by political considerations originating outside Hong Kong are unjustified and damaging to our legal system, and to Hong Kong as a whole.

Grenville Cross, former director of public prosecutions, also supported the custodial sentences. Commenting on the case, he wrote: Although this was a serious public order offence, the trial magistrate failed to reflect this in her sentences. She imposed community service orders on two of the men and a short suspended prison sentence on the third.

He added: For as long as it remains the case that everyone is equal before the law, there cannot be one type of sentence for political activists and another for other lawbreakers.

The three men are appealing to Hong Kongs top court. However, the Court of Final Appeal is in an invidious position. Legal reasoning, it appears, is irrelevant for even eminent world figures will view the courts decision through a political lens.

Hong Kong is struggling to maintain the high degree of autonomy that it was promised. In that struggle, the independent judiciary plays a role that cannot be overstated. Telling the world that the game is over, that one country, two systems is no longer in existence, that Hong Kong is just another Chinese city and that the rule of law is gone and the judiciary is no longer independent cannot by any stretch of the imagination be deemed as helpful to Hong Kongs struggle.

Overseas support is important for the former British colony, but Hong Kongs friends overseas should realize that undermining the one institution that is its biggest asset is not the way to go about it.

- Here is somebody from the Religious sector: Retired cardinal Joseph Zen.

"Rule of law is being destroyed in Hong Kong!"

The cruelest totalitarian regimes in history all began this way on the road to success.

The term "unjust judges" is frequently touted by Jesus Christ (Luke 18:1-8)

They beat the human rights warriors with their left hand, but the candy given out by the right hand is poisoned. Do not be tricked by them, because using so-called livelihoods to oppress civil rights is the "pig breeding policy."

- Luke 18:1-8 The Parable of the Persistent Widow

1. Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.

2. He said: In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought.

3. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, Grant me justice against my adversary.

4. For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, Even though I dont fear God or care what people think, 

5. yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she wont eventually come and attack me!

6. And the Lord said, Listen to what the unjust judge says. 

7. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? 

8. I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?

What is the moral of this parable? It says that if you want the judge to rule your way, you should make him fear that you will attack him otherwise. He will rule your way just to get you out of his way.

This is called Rule by Force. It is not Rule of Law, because we have no idea what the legal issues are in the widow's case. But we are sure that she must be right because of her widowhood and her persistence.

If Jesus Christ says that this works, we should give it a try. Let us begin by mailing razorblades to Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma and all the other judges. Their hearts will be stricken with fear. They will overturn their own rulings and then justice will be achieved.

As to why God has not brought about justice for his chosen ones, that's because everybody knows that they have no means to attacking Him. In like manner, we have to find a way of directly hurting Xi Jinping.

Internet comments:

- This is a useless petition because it does not specify what you want the White House to do and why it would be good for them (and the American people) to do so. When you say: "We demand the immediate and unconditional release of all prisoners of conscience, and an end to the political persecution in Hong Kong" you are articulating your demands. What has this got to do with the White House? Why should the White House adopt this as their own demand?

You should be pressuring the White House by positioning the United States as having the manifest destiny as the beacon of Freedom and Democracy for the whole white world. Therefore, they have the White Man's Burden to do everything possible to press for the immediate unconditional release of these prisoners of conscience. You do not have to spell out the specific actions that you want them to do (e.g. cut off all ties with the People's Republic of China; ban all imports from Hong Kong; send the Seventh Fleet to occupy Victoria Harbor; issue an arrest warrant for CY Leung; send in Specials Ops to extract Joshua Wong from the Pik Uk Correctional Institution; etc). You only have to give them the end goals and they can decide the means.

- The freedom warrior who was given the longest sentence should be the first to be released. Here is Yeung Ka-lun who was sentenced to 4 years 9 months for exercising his freedoms of speech and assembly on the basis of the photos taken by an amateur photographer. We demand the immediate and unconditional release of prisoner of conscience Yeung Ka-lun! Long live democracy! Long live freedom!

- (YouTube) And here are the 13 heroes from North East New Territories exercising their freedoms of speech and assembly in accordance with universal standards.

- How to sign the petition an unlimited number of times, as provided by Wan Chin's Facebook:

Step 1: Use to register an anonymous email address
Step 2: Sign the petition at with name and email address.
Step 3: 10 seconds later, will receive an email from to confirm.
Step 4: Confirm your signature by clicking.

- Well, I'll be fucking damned if I sign this petition addressed to The Donald. He is a Mad Man. Who knows what he'll do? Launch nuclear missiles at Hong Kong? Build a twenty-foot-tall wall around Hong Kong? Turn Hong Kong into an exclusive Ivanka Trump product-line?

- The second half of the fourth point "calls for international solidarity to address the territory's continuous decline of civil and political rights." This part about international solidarity should not be addressed to Donald Trump, because he gets little or no confidence from around the world (see Pew Research Centre June 2016). If you list Donald Trump as supporting the cause, almost everybody else will run away.

- This White House petition will be as effective as this previous one: Alex and Stephy forever together!

(SCMP) August 25, 2017.

Hong Kongs top court on Friday rejected a final bid by two disqualified pro-independence lawmakers to be reinstated, putting paid to their political ambitions and affecting the opposition camps chances of recapturing their seats in later by-elections.

The Court of Final Appeals refusal to allow Sixtus Baggio Leung Chung-hang and Yau Wai-ching to appeal their case left them with no chance of being reinstated in the Legislative Council.

Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma Tao-li and permanent Court of Final Appeal judges Roberto Ribeiro and Joseph Fok said the localist pair did not have a reasonably arguable case, and they would explain their ruling later.

A disappointed Baggio Leung said outside court: We sincerely apologise [to the public that] we cannot protect the results of the Legco elections in September last year. He urged judges to safeguard the rule of law, saying the system had been abused by the local government and Beijing. They are the only ones who can save the people now, he said. The pair revealed they had been left with a HK$12 million legal bill, and said they were mentally prepared to declare bankruptcy.

Baggio Leungs counsel, British barrister David Pannick QC, argued on Friday that the case was not a matter of constitutional law, and only the citys law should be applied, which meant the court should not interfere with the legislature.

Pannick also pressed judges to further interpret Beijings interpretation of the Basic Law denying the lawmakers a second chance to take their oaths. He also argued that the interpretation, which came after they took their oaths, should not have a retroactive effect.

But Mr Justice Ribeiro said Beijings ruling was binding on the court. What should we do? he said.

(Wen Wei Po) Selected highlights of the legal arguments. August 26, 2017.

Appellant: One should focus only on the intent and action of the oath, or else this becomes a political ruling.
Judge: That is to say, as long as you read out the text, it becomes a successful oath? What about altering the text of the oath? And do sincerity and solemnity have nothing to do with oaths?
Judge: Did Yau Wai-ching pronounce "The People's Republic of China" properly?
Appellant: No.
Judge: Which country was Yau Wai-ching pledging allegiance to in her oath?
Appellant: Hong Kong. Because she thinks that Hong Kong is her nation.
Judge: Did Yau Wai-ching pledge allegiance to the People's Republic of China?
Appellant: No.
Judge: So why was this not a declination to take the oath?
Appellant: Because the Legislative Council secretary-general only said that her "oath was invalid."
Appellant: There is no objective standards for sincerity and solemnity in oath-taking.

Judge: When Leung Chung-hang took his oath, he held the Bible with his fingers crossed. Does this not objectively show that he does not intend to abide by his oath?
Appellant: The demonstration objects with the words "Hong Kong is not China" should be ignored.
Judge: The meaning of these objects is contrary to the oath. Article 1 of the Hong Kong Basic Law says that Hong Kong is an inseparable part of China.
Appellant: "Hong Kong is not China" should be interpreted according to the situation. For example, during the FIFA World Cup qualifying rounds when Hong Kong plays the national team, Hong Kong is not China.
Judge: But this is not a football field. This is a court.

Appellant: The Legislative Council permitted the two to re-take their oaths. Therefore the court should not intercede.
Judge: If a popularly elected legislator took his oath properly but the Legislative Council ruled that the oath was invalid, should the court intercede?
Appellant: It should.

Appellant: Article 26 of the Hong Kong Basic Law guarantees that citizens have the right to run for election and to be elected. When the court issues its ruling, it must consider whether it is violating the citizens' constitutional right to run for election. Once elected, their case involves their political rights.
Judge: Counsel should re-read the relevant ordinance. They have exercised their right to run for election and their right to be elected. But they chose to disqualify themselves as legislators. The relevant ordinance states clearly that Hong Kong Special Administrative Region permanent residents have the right to run for election and to be elected "in accordance with the law." Does "in accordance with the law" include the Oaths and Declarations Ordinance? The case precedents have explained that we must obey the constitutional requirements.

Appellant: The National People's Congress Standing Committee's interpretation of the Basic Law is "amending the Hong Kong Basic Law." Such an amendment should not have an retroactive effect. There is no argument that the court must accept the National People's Congress Standing Committee's interpretation. But the problem is about how we should understand the Interpretation? Do we follow the words literally, or do we have to consider standards of human rights?
Judge: This court cannot be interpreting the Interpretation of the National People's Congress Standing Committee. The authority of the Interpretation of the National People's Congress Standing Committee stems from the Constitution of the People's Republic of China. In the case of Lau Kong Yung v Director of Immigration, the Court of Final Appeal has stated that this authority is broad and unrestricted. The Interpretation has clearly stated that Legislative Councilors must take their oaths sincerely and solemnly. What is there to interpret? The Interpretation also states that once the Legislative Councilor declines or refuses to take the oath, there won't be another chance.

(Wen Wei Po) August 26, 2017.

During the original and appeal court cases, Leung/Yau hired Senior Counsel Victor Dawes and Senior Counsel Hectar Pun. It is estimated that these two will charge $4 million in legal fees.

In the application to the Court of Final Appeal, Leung hired Queen's Counsel David Pannick and Yau hired Senior Counsel Gladys Li. It is estimated that these two will charge $4 million in total.

Leung/Yau have been ordered by the Court of Final Appeal to pay for the government's legal fees. The government had hired Senior Counsel Benjamin Yu and Senior Counsel Johnny Mok. It is estimated that that these two will charge $5 million in total.

So the total legal fees amounts to $4 million + $4 million + $5 million = $13 million.

Meanwhile back at the Legislative Council, chairman Andrew Leung indicated that the secretariat will commence action to demand Leung/Yau pay back $930,000 for salaries and expenses.

Yesterday, Leung Chung-hang told the press that he may have to declare bankruptcy.

- (Official Receiver's Office) FAQ about Bankruptcy

11. Q: Is a bankrupt required to pay his debts? What will happen to a bankrupt's assets and income?

A: In principle, a bankrupt's debts will be met from his/her assets and income. For this purpose, a bankrupt must hand over all his/her assets, both overseas and local, to the Trustee immediately upon the granting of the Bankruptcy Order. He/She must also inform the Trustee of his/her income. The Trustee will, after taking a view of the reasonable domestic needs of the bankrupt and his/her family, distribute the balance of his/her assets and income to his/her creditors to repay his/her debts.

12. Q: Can a bankrupt travel by taxi?

A: He/She should not unless there are reasonable grounds for doing so.

- Fleeing from the Police Special Tactical Unit is reasonable grounds (see video).

- According to CAP 542 Legislative Council Ordinance:

Section 39. When person is disqualified from being nominated as a candidate and from being elected as a Member

(1) A person is disqualified from being nominated as a candidate at an election, and from being elected as a Member, if the person

(i) is an undischarged bankrupt or, within the previous 5 years, has either obtained a discharge in bankruptcy or has entered into a voluntary arrangement within the meaning of the Bankruptcy Ordinance (Cap. 6) with the persons creditors, in either case without paying the creditors in full.

So Leung Chung-hang won't be eligible to run in any Legislative Council by-election/election after filing for bankruptcy.

(EJ Insight) August 29, 2017.

Ousted legislators Sixtus Baggio Leung and Yau Wai-ching said they would not take part in the by-elections after their appeal against their disqualification was rejected by the Court of Final of Appeal last week. However, the duo said they would support any candidates from their Youngspiration party.

Leung admitted that his disqualification was to a certain extent a result of his decision-making. He said he made many mistakes including overestimating the protections of the rule of law.

I would not have gone down this route had I known the result. I misjudged the situation, Leung said. The judges had accepted the fact that the interpretation [of the Basic Law by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress] was done, and they accepted the results completely. He added that by joining the by-elections, it would be agreeing with the disqualification in the first place, Apple Daily reports.

Yau said losing the Legco seat does not mean she cannot be an active politician. I would really lose it when I forget even my own principles, Yau said. If I gave in just like that, I would truly be sorry to the people who voted for me. After the judgment, Yau took to Facebook to express her regrets over her rashness and arrogance. She said she is sorry for the workers who campaigned for her.

The pair now face a claim from Legco for wages and expenses totaling HK$1.86 million but said there is no legal basis for the Legislative Council Office to chase them. Leung said he anticipated Legcos attempts to recover the money but said there is no need for a judicial review. Also, he said he will not raise funds to cover his legal bills.

When asked about their future, both Yau and Leung said they are working but Leung added he has yet to think of a long-term plan. Yau said her plans could change depending on the circumstances such as attending Legco meetings and other consultations to voice out her opinions.

Leung said Youngspiration has decided to move on from outside the establishment and hopes to support political prisoners.

(Court of First Instance, High Court) Doris Leung Kit-hing vs. Electoral Affairs Commission. February 9, 2018.

1. On 6 December 2017, the Applicant made an application for leave to apply for judicial review of the decision (the Decision) of the Electoral Affairs Commission (the EAC) to arrange for a Legislative Council by-election (the By-Election) to be held on 11 March 2018 to fill, inter alia, the vacant seats arising from the disqualification of Mr Leung Chung Hang (Leung) and Ms Yau Wai Ching (Yau) from assuming office as members of the Legislative Council.

8. Her ground of the application is that, under Section 36(1)(e)(ii) of the Legislative Council Ordinance, Cap 542 (the LCO), the EAC should not arrange for the holding of the By-Election prior to the termination of the following proceedings:

(1) an application made by the Applicant to the Court of Final Appeal on 28 August 2017 to, inter alia, set aside the CFA Determination on the ground of alleged irregularity in the hearing on 25 August 2017; and

(2) her application to the European Court of Human Rights complaining about the disqualification of Leung and Yau from assuming office as Legislative Council members and/or the aforesaid legal proceedings in Hong Kong.

13. The Applicant argues, however, that under Section 36(1)(e)(ii), the EAC should not arrange for the holding of the By-Election until the termination of the appeal proceedings in other circumstances which, according to the Applicant, includes the outstanding proceedings mentioned in paragraph 8 above.

14. In my view, the Applicants argument is based on a misunderstanding or misinterpretation of Section 36(1)(e)(ii). The appeal proceedings referred to there is a reference to appeal proceedings in the Court of Final Appeal against determinations made by the Court of First Instance in election petitions under Section 67. The proceedings commenced by the Applicant mentioned in paragraph 8 above plainly do not come within the words appeal proceedings in Section 36(1)(e)(ii). It follows that the EAC is correct in law to arrange for the holding of the By-Election.

15. At the hearing on 2 February 2018, the Applicant sought to argue that Leung and Yau should not have been disqualified, and that their counsel failed to properly present their respective cases to the Court of Final Appeal on 25 August 2017. Quite apart from the lack of substance in those arguments, it must be said that, as far as this court is concerned, the CFA Determination is final and conclusive.

16. In short, the application for leave to apply for judicial review is not reasonably arguable.

17. I also consider it to be plain that the Applicant lacks standing in this matter. Leung and Yau, being the persons directly affected, were represented by highly experienced counsel and they fully participated in the relevant legal proceedings relating to their disqualification at all levels. That being the position, I am unable to see how the Applicant can be said to have standing to mount another legal challenge on the same cause or matter.

Internet comments:

Pay Back!
Top row: drink alcohol, bankrupt, jail, bankrupt, hourly rate hotel
Bottom row: pay back, bankrupt, jail, bankrupt, go to Japan

- Here are the three 'judges' who sold out our two Localist heroes for 30 pieces of gold.

Geoffrey Ma, Roberto Ribeiro and Joseph Fok

Death to these traitors and their families!

- More threats from the keyboard warrior! Did you remember to hide your IP-address from the Cyber Security and Technology Crime Bureau of the Hong Kong Police Force? Did you remember to use an anonymous prepaid phone card on a $800 Xiaomi phone to post the message and then throw everything into Victoria Harbour afterwards?

- Previously
#645 They Need More Money
#626 They've Got New Legal Theories

So what are these best new legal theories that money can buy? In the end, the Court of Final Appeal did not even listen to the government's rebuttal. They met briefly and came back to say that the appeal was "not reasonably arguable." That was it. Furthermore, this case will serve as a precedent to the case of the DQ4, which will also be declared to be "not reasonably arguable."

- (Legal Advice) In 1984, Morton L. Janklow wrote in Parade magazine:

I call it The Last Resort Rule. It was taught to me by a great teacher at Columbia Law School named Jerome Michael, who taught a course in appellate advocacy. At the last moment in the last class of the course, when he had taught us everything he knew, he said: These are my final words on advocacy. If you have the facts on your side, hammer the facts. If you have the law on your side, hammer the law. If you have neither the facts nor the law, hammer the table.

The facts about what happened around the oaths are not in dispute. The law is also crystal clear after the NPCSC interpretation of Basic Law Article 104. And Pannick/Li did not pound the table. Therefore the case was lost.

- (Post852) August 30, 2017. Lord Pannick said that he felt helpless about the outcome. He said: "This is Hong Kong." He said that he offered his help in the case because he thought that it was "nonsense" for the government to disqualify the two popularly elected legislative councilors and therefore he reached out to contact Leung/Yau's legal team.

- If Lord Pannick thought that the government's case was nonsense, then why did he present his own case such that the Court of Final Appeal declared that it was "not reasonably arguable"? Maybe Lord Pannick should reflect on that.

- The fatal flaw in the Leung/Yau case is that the facts of the case cannot be argued. There are videos of the oaths taken by Leung/Yau. So the case was always presented as "We are not going to dispute the facts ..." and "we will not contest that the oaths were sincere and solemn." How do you get out of that hole?

You start by arguing that there are no objective standards for sincerity and solemnity, and therefore different people will have different opinions about those oaths. This leads to a direct question: "Do you personally believe that Leung Chung-hang holding a Bible in his hand with this fingers crossed was being sincere and solemn?" ... Or another direct question: "Did Yau Wai-ching pronounce the People's Republic of China in her oath?" ... Lord Pannick is not going to lie for those two (or anyone else for that matter). He will have to honestly say NO and then move on to some other peripheral aspect.

- This is a hypothetical scenario which won't happen in real life, because lawyers cannot be personally questioned.

(SCMP) August 26, 2017.

Although Macau residents readily welcomed the help of the Peoples Liberation Army in cleaning and relief operations after Wednesdays devastating typhoon, the move is a cautionary warning to Hong Kong on being well-prepared for natural disasters, commentators said on Friday.

After Typhoon Hato, the worst storm in more than half a century to hit the former Portuguese enclave, left 10 dead, more than 200 people hurt and streets carpeted with rubbish, Macau people were happy to let the soldiers march in.

The help of the PLA is allowed for disaster relief, under the Basic Law of both Macau and Hong Kong, if the government of the Special Administrative Region in question requests it.

But Dr Chung Kim-wah, a political scientist at Polytechnic University, said: If the same happened in Hong Kong, it would be unbelievable. A public outcry could be expected. Hong Kong peoples mentality was that under one country two systems, we should avoid the scene as much as we can for fear of encouraging Beijings interference.

Chung said Hong Kong and Macau might have a similar one country, two systems model in theory, but they were very different in their political culture. Macau residents, since colonial times accepted living under Beijings large shadow, he said.

A statement from the Macau government information bureau emphasised that the request was made by Fernando Chui Sai-on in accordance with the citys mini-constitution, the Basic Law, but commentators like Chung wondered if this could set a precedent for Hong Kong.

Chinese University political scientist Dr Ma Ngok also questioned the urgency for Macau to call for help from the PLA. It is not about paving roads and mending fallen bridges. The crucial point is no water and electricity, but that is not something the PLA can help with, he said. But he believed it was too early to say whether it would set a precedent for Hong Kong, as the city had never suffered such severe damage in a natural disaster. I just find it quite embarrassing. It means the Macau government is incapable of handling the governance, while some PLA soldiers look weak as they fell after a few hours of cleaning up, Ma added.

- Chief Executive Carrie Lam was asked whether she would ask for PLA soldiers to help in the event of a disaster in Hong Kong. She said that she does not comment on hypothetical situations.

- When asked whether the Democratic Party would apologize if Lam Tsz-kin turned out to be lying, the answer was that they do not comment on hypothetical situations.

- If a typhoon hits Hong Kong in the scale of Hato hitting Macau, we can probably handle the clean up ourselves. But if the disaster is a tsunami hitting the entire Hong Kong Island southern coastline from Stanley through Repulse Bay to Ap Lei Chau and Aberdeen with 40-ft storm surges and hundreds of thousands are citizens are dead, injured or missing, then the more help from any source (PLA, US Seventh Fleet, Taiwan, Japan, whatever) the better. Instead of worrying about the PLA and One Country Two Systems, you should be helping the victims any way that you can.

- If the Chief Executive should ask the PLA for help, the People of Hong Kong will have a two-pronged response.

Firstly, at the street level, the valiant localists will throw themselves in front of the PLA trucks to prevent them from bringing food, water and blankets to the victims. They will even blow up the tunnels, bridges and railway tracks.

Secondly, at the legal level, the localists will apply for legal aid to hire a Queen's Counsel to seek a judicial review of the Chief Executive's decision all the way to the Court of Final Appeal. Until the case is resolved, a temporary court injunction will stop any action. By the time the case is settled, it will be many years after the "72 golden hours" for rescue operations. The net result is that Hong Kong's reputation as a rule-of-law international financial center will be preserved.

- Professor Chung Kim-wah said that the people of Hong Kong do not want the People's Liberation Army in Hong Kong. Hey, I thought that they arrived 20 years ago and are still here with no intention of leaving (see People's Liberation Army Hong Kong Garrison).

- On8 Channel Facebook

I don't know what to say. The disaster victims naturally want help. But the British Army only used to help New Territories residents build roads. I have never heard that they were into disaster relief. In mainland China, this is routine but usually after a major disaster (and not a typhoon).

- On8 Channel Facebook

Au Kam San's Facebook
I have been through the 1989 democracy movement. Frankly, I don't have good feelings about the PLA
, and I don't trust them. But this time, after Typhoon Hato, the SAR government unexpectedly asked the Central Government to send the Macau PLA to take part in disaster relief. But this so-called disaster relief only require them to remove garbage and debris from the streets. This is not using them right. When the PLA relieve disasters, we see them on television jumping into the flood waters to save people. That is disaster relief. But in Macau, they are required to remove debris. I noticed that one officer said that this effort was an act of labor. So even the soldiers and their commanders probably have misgivings about this mission, but they have to follow the orders.

It is true that there are mounds of debris everywhere after the storm. The various Macau government departments are trying their best, but they cannot do everything quickly enough. Over the past several days, we have seen a number of civic organizations organizing large numbers of volunteers to help clear the debris. This is a manifestation of the spirit of Macau people to help themselves. We all see that. When the Macau PLA joins in, the process is speeded up because there are more people and trucks. But is this any way to use the PLA? Frankly, the PLA may have experience in disaster relief. But they may not be professional enough to pick up garbage or cut down trees. At the least, they won't be as good as the frontline workers of the Macau Home Affairs Bureau. The Macau SAR has been in existence for 18 years. It should no longer act like a baby expecting other people to help. If they have to call on the PLA to clear their garbage, they can't be talking about Macau People Ruling Macau? Therefore, I find the action of the Macau SAR government to be incomprehensible.

Wong On-yin's Facebook
This is an clear and objective analysis. Disaster relief is not picking up garbage.
If Hong Kong is in a similar situation, such as Yau Ma Ti or Sheung Shui Shek Wu Hui coming under water and the government is not there, an open call will get people from other districts to come and help. I am extremely confident about this. We are still savoring the orderliness amidst the chaos of Admiralty and Mong Kok in 2014. I don't know when we can do this again.
Therefore when Au Kam San thanks the Central Government for sending the PLA to pick up the garbage, it has a certain German-style humor. I laughed for a fucking long time.

- Born In A Time Of Chaos Facebook

August 26: A group of PLA swagger and eat in the middle of a Macau street. The implication is that One Country Two Systems is dead already except in name. All it took was one word from the Chief Executive and the PLA is upon the people of Macau. Have the people of Hong Kong seen this clearly? The PLA was mobilized just for a so-called typhoon disaster. Someday if there should be another Umbrella Revolution, the result will be the same.

- Another Umbrella Revolution? If it is just another 50 people throwing bricks, then the Hong Kong Police Special Tactical Unit will send you scattering in the winds. This would not be an Umbrella Revolution; it would be playing schoolyard games (eagle-and-chickens, cops-and-robbers, etc). Why would they need the PLA?

- On September 28, 2014 the demonstration took place close to the PLA barracks in Central. The PLA took no action on that day nor any other time. The PLA will not be summoned to participate in a game of cops-and-robbers.

- (Texas Tribune) August 28, 2017. Gov. Greg Abbott announced Monday he has activated the entire Texas National Guard in response to Hurricane Harvey, bringing the total number of deployed personnel for rescue efforts to 12,000. "It is imperative that we do everything possible to protect the lives and safety of people across the state of Texas as we continue to face the aftermath of this storm," the governor said in a released statement.

- Hey, Harvey was merely a hurricane, just as Hato was merely a typhoon. Why make such a fuss? If they people buried under the mud can crawl out by themselves, they deserve to die anyway.

- Photographic evidence of the PLA's non-professionalism

- Oy! How many flaws can be seen as obvious in this lazy unprofessional PhotoShop job!? The woman is under a strong light (see reflective forehead, shoulder and forearm), but she casts no shadow on the ground and the edges of her person do not blend into the environment. The eyes of the PLA are not all in her direction, and the PLA do not blend into the environment. The two piles of garbage have sharp edges and strong lighting which does not mesh with the background street.

(Oriental Daily) August 26, 2017.

Early this morning an Internet user LoveUKLoveHK38 posted to a discussion forum: "The People's Liberation Army took the guise of disaster relief in Macau to use their military vehicles to rob goods from stores. They assaulted citizens. The People's Liberation Army dragged two Macau men into an underground garage and beat them to death. There were multiple bruise marks on their bodies."

This Internet user wrote: "I personally witnessed the Macau People's Liberation Army robbing stores. They came with their military trucks and they robbed one store after another. Some of the People's Liberation Army ringleaders even said that the loot would be less glaring if they take it back to mainland China to sell."

Another Internet user rejoined: "If what you 'witnessed personally' is untrue, you are in trouble." But the first Internet user insisted: "Everything that I said is factual, not fake news. I am not scared if you call the police."

- The Internet user was asked to provide: WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE, WHY and HOW. Each question should have a factual answer facts necessary to include for a report to be considered complete. Importantly, none of these questions can be answered with a simple "yes" or "no". That Internet user did not resurface. Of course.

- If you are the PLA and you have tanks and guns, why would you go and rob a convenience store for their potato chips and sodas? You would be marching into Casino Lisboa, Sands, Galaxy, MGM or The Venetian to break into their vaults and grab the billions in cash.

(SCMP) August 29, 2017.

Macau police have arrested a brother and sister for spreading false information online claiming that bodies were found in a car park flooded during a recent storm, and authorities had tried to cover up the deaths. The 73-year-old businessman and his jobless sister, 68, were arrested in a flat in Areia Preta on Monday after they allegedly disseminated false information through a mobile messaging application. The messages claimed that five bodies, including a family of four killed inside a car, were recovered in a flooded car park in Fai Chi Kei, according to a spokeswoman for Macau Judiciary Police. The pair were also said to have claimed that the authorities were covering up the news and barring the media from accessing it, according to the spokeswoman. The pair also urged recipients to spread their claims. The woman told police she had received the message from an online chat room on Saturday and spread it the next day. Police were tracing the source of the rumour and urged the public not to distribute the message further.

Antonio Ng Kuok-cheong, a pro-democracy legislator in Macau, said the authorities had come down harder on false messages relating to public affairs over the past year, and had earned approval from the community. He said the news of the arrests did not create a stir with the public, while some were more interested in the ages of the two suspects.

Tsang Chi-ho's Facebook

My essay <Revelations of Hato> has drawn criticisms. Let me clarify here.

The essay was written on Wednesday when Hato hit Hong Kong and Macau. At the time, we only knew that there was electricity/water services were out in Macau. We did not know about the deaths.

The essay was published on Friday. By that time, we learned that there were many deaths and injuries. We never expected that.

Therefore when I used the term <Funeral money>, I did not imply anything about dead human beings. When I wrote those words down, I did not know that there were casualties.

My essay was critical of the Macau's government's inability to handle a disaster. They paid no attention to infrastructure maintenance. They only knew how to dole out money. When disaster strikes, the people finally realized that the handouts were useless. I was criticizing the futility of the Macau government. I was completely not targeting disaster victims in Macau.

My essay used words poorly and created misunderstanding, causing more wounds to the people of Macau. I feel very bad about this, so I want to clarify.

Hong Kong and Macau are united in solidarity in the face of disaster.

- What is this rubbish!? On the morning of August 23 (Wednesday), we already knew that at least three people have died. This punk's characterization of the government distributions as 帛金 (a gift of money to the bereaved given at a funeral) appeared in Apple Daily on August 25 (Friday). He had plenty of time to tell the editor to pull back. He didn't because he really believed in it. He is retreating now in the face of an online tidal wave.

... the misery and backwardness after the electricity/water stoppage make us realize that the several thousand dollars doled out by Macau is actually intended to make you not to be sorrowful. The gift of money to the bereaved given at a funeral.

- I fucking hope that you will drop dead. RTHK gives you a fucking paycheck every month. May that be the gift of money to the bereaved at your fucking funeral!

- Lok Lei Facebook

I don't blame you Hongkongers for being ignorant, but don't you get bored with being divisive all the time? When Macau gives out money, you call it a gift for bereavement. You want the grapes but you also want to curse. I want to say that welfare benefits are even better in Canada and Switzerland, so why are you not cursing them out? In what way have the people of Macau offended you? We are separated only by a body of water. Whether they (the PLA) came in for show, at least they came here to help. What about you people? You only know how to create internal divisions? A whole bunch of keyboard warriors who are laughing about how Macau deserves all this. Shame on you. And you call this the Spirit of Lion Rock. The following screen capture is intended to show what your Hong Kong spirit is:

- They receive almost $10,000 per person as gag fee. Of course they won't rebel.
- When Article 23 was enacted, you didn't say anything.
- You deserve this, people of Macau.
- Macau doles out money. You can die willingly.

- This Macau guy is an asshole. The fact is that the people of Hong Kong is a completely different race of people from the Chinamen in mainland China, and also a completely different race of people from the Chinamen in Macau. We owe nothing to the Chinamen in Macau. Not sympathy. Not help in disaster relief. We the people of Hong Kong are a superior race. We are strong, we are brave and we don't need anyone else.

- The goal of the pro-Hong Kong independence faction is to make sure that Hongkongers develop a sense of identity as citizens of the Hong Kong Nation which is a separate race from the Chee-na peasants north of the border. Therefore they will oppose anything that brings Hong Kong closer to mainland China, including High Speed Rail, Forbidden Palace Museum in the West Kowloon Cultural District, etc, and now the PLA in disaster relief in Macau.

It would be cold-blooded for the Hong Kong keyboard warriors to oppose the PLA helping out on disaster relief. The head-on battle of words is a sure loser. However, an even greater victory can be achieved on a different battlefield. By speaking in the name of the People of Hong Kong, these keyboard warriors are offending the people of Macau (for willing to be paid off with $9,000 per year in bereavement gifts) as well as the people of mainland China (because their People's Liberation Army don't know how to pick up garbage and some of them even fainted in the heat). If they keep doing this, the rest of China will hate Hong Kong so much that they will let it become independent.

- (HKG Pao) Letter from a Macau netizen to the People of Hong Kong and the RTHK host:

I am a native Macau person. There has been a natural disaster in Macau with many casualties. Regardless of the deficiencies of the weather forecast and emergency response, how should people react to such a disaster? During the 311 Japan earthquake, the people of Hong Kong felt sorrowful and helped out. But when neighboring Macau is hit, many Hongkongers such as you only want to pick out some minor issues and magnify them as humor. Macau is smaller than Hong Kong and it has fewer people. But we are proud that we live harmoniously with each other. If a major incident happens in Hong Kong (such as the fire in the industrial building), we give our support to the people of Hong Kong and express our condolences to the victims. We do not drop rocks on someone at the bottom of the well. So how come the people of Hong Kong are only gleeful about the sufferings in Macau? Apart from caring about the pork chop buns, Portuguese chicken and egg tarts of Macau, you don't know anything about the preciousness of life?

This disaster has let me see a lot about you. I listen to your radio host who only knows how to tell jokes. Whatever your political position may be, if someday disaster strikes and your life is endangered, will you accept help? And if you are worried about you and your family, do you want to listen to jokes about your situation?

I don't expect you or any Hongkonger to help. But I wish you wouldn't pour salt in our wounds. It is unfortunate for this disaster to happen to Macau. I would not wish it upon Hong Kong. Finally I ask you:

The people of Macau have not hurt you people
Please do not pour salt on our wounds!

- (HKG Pao) August 29, 2017.

Tsang Chi-ho continues his personal campaign to provoke the people of Macau. He wrote: "If Macau can maintain a little bit more autonomy, have a bit more dissident voices, give away a bit less money and perform a bit more infrastructure maintenance, then the disaster would not have been so devastating?"

- Hey, Macau is doing fine right now. Meanwhile there are 70,000 Hurricane Harvey victims still waiting to be rescued in Houston (Texas) several days afterwards. Perhaps Tsang Chi-ho should jump out of the bottom-of-his-well and lecture the Americans on how "harmony can't relieve disaster" or "democracy cannot mitigate the Wrath of God" or "doing a bit of infrastructure maintenance would help a lot."

- Tsang Chi-ho is an RTHK host, but he lacks even the most minimal respect and sympathy for the misfortune of others.

- Suppose you have a few more democratically elected legislative councilors who filibuster everything that the government tries to do (e.g. spend money to do infrastructure maintenance), do you really think that this typhoon Hato disaster would be any less devastating in Hong Kong?

Chip Tso's Channel

If you want to learn English, you can do some naughty writing. A person should not have too serious a character. For example:

Macao is getting really Macao Fan once fanned up by a typhoon
Perhaps the name of the street can be changed to:
Avenida Del Alma Dailunwoga

[Explanation: "Macao Fan" is a Cantonese homonym for "fucking troublesome". "Del Alma" is a Cantonese homonym for "Fuck your mother". "Dailunwo" is a Cantonese homonym for "Big fucking trouble."]

This post was subsequently deleted by Chip Tso. No apologies. Never say sorry.

- Time for some Hurricane Katrina jokes? One cannot be too serious all the time, right?

- Katrina 1 and Katrina 2 tagline: Having democracy won't save your life. President George W. Bush had this to say about Federal Emergency Management Agency director Michael Brown: "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job."

(SCMP) August 26, 2017.

At least four Hong Kong journalists, including a South China Morning Post photographer, were denied entry to Macau on Saturday on the grounds that they posed a security threat to the former Portuguese colony.

The journalists had hoped to cover the clean-up in Macau after it was severely hit by Typhoon Hato last week. The storm claimed 10 lives and left more than 200 injured.

The Posts photographer Felix Wong was stopped and detained by Macau authorities as he arrived in the casino hub at around 2pm on Saturday. He received a written statement from Macau immigration saying he posed a risk to the stability of internal security.

Two reporters from Apple Daily and another from online portal HK01 were also denied entry for the same reason.

Tammy Tam, editor-in-chief of South China Morning Post, expressed deep concern that the publications photographer was detained by the Macau authorities. We strongly object to the detention of our journalists carrying out their duty to inform the public. They pose no security threat to anyone or anything. We will be pursuing this matter with the relevant authorities.

Apple Dailys editor-in-chief Ryan Law Wai-kwong said he deeply regretted the ban and said the reason used by the Macau authorities was absolutely ridiculous. He said he did not see how media reporting could constitute a threat to the citys internal security.

Law said the move had not only hampered press freedom but also affected Macau residents right to access the latest information regarding the disaster relief effort and the coming storm. If Macau locals could not get hold of this information, they might face another disaster very soon, he said.

HK01 also expressed deep concerns over the ban and pledged to follow up the incident with the Macau authorities.

Ma Io Kun, the commissioner of the Public Security Police in Macau, said the ban was issued in accordance with the law and had nothing to do with the visitors occupations.

- Does Ryan Law even read Apple Daily himself? Does he know about the online storms created by Tsang Chi-ho and Chip Tso?

- (Wen Wei Po) August 26, 2017.

A once-in-a-century typhoon hit Macau and some low-lying areas were flooded. The Central Government approved a request to send the Macau PLA to help clean up debris on the Rua de Cinco de Outubro. Macau citizens came out to applaud the PLA along the way. In the United States, the National Guard is frequently sent out to help in post-hurricane clean-ups. So this is the standard international norm.

Apple Daily is using the typhoon disaster to create fear because the PLA is coming into Macau and the government is useless. They wanted to use this incident to undermine Hongkongers' trust in the Central Government and One Country Two Systems. If the PLA can enter Macau, they can enter Hong Kong too. Therefore Hongkongers have plenty to fear.

Apple Daily's reportage ignored the severity of the typhoon and the needs of the people. Their reporter even laughed while reporting on the post-typhoon situation. Apple Daily also said that electricity/water stoppage occurred in Macau because they depended on mainland China for supply. Since Hong Kong gets electricity and water from mainland China as well, Hongkongers should have plenty to fear as well.

- (Apple Daily) August 27, 2017.

The female taxi driver asked: "Where are you heading to? "We want to go to Areia Preta" replied our reporter. The taxi driver took a look atus and asked: "Are you volunteers?" "No, we are reporters from Hong Kong. We want to go there to gather news." "You Hongkongers treat us in this manner. We are not going to serve you!" The taxi driver said no and took off.

Our reporter and our photographer were stunned. We had been impressed by the kindness of the people of Macau since the typhoon, but here we were suddenly turned away. We got on another taxi driven by a young man. I asked the driver whether there is conflict between Hong Kong and Macau recently. He said the Macau typhoon disaster has been a hot Internet topic. Some Hongkonger scorned the yearly distribution of money by the Macau SAR government as bereavement gifts, and that Macau drivers were stupid to be drowned with their cars. He said that these remarks drew the Macau people to ask: "If the Hong Kong government doles out money, will the people of Hong Kong refuse?"

- Hey, how did this come about? Wasn't the Apple Daily reporter refused entry? Or is this another piece of fiction?

- The joke was that reporters are allowed into Macau, but Apple Daily reporters are not because they are fiction writers and not reporters.

- Macau taxi: "Hong Kong bumpkins and dogs, do not enter this car."

- (Apple Daily ) August 29, 2017.

A Macau media worker who wishes to remain anonymous told Apple Daily that the local media have received orders to report only good news and suppress bad news. This media worker said that the boss called in person to demand the main theme of the news be "harmony": "If you don't like it, you don't have a job." This media worker said that other Macau media workers have all encountered similar situations.

- Why does the Apple Daily reporter need to travel to Macau to file such a story? How hard is it to sit in Hong Kong and make up a story based upon "a source who wishes to remain anonymous" with no specific details on anything.

- (Hong Kong Free Press) August 31, 2017.

An Apple Daily journalist was turned away from the border on Thursday for being a threat to internal security and stability.

On Tuesday, the head of Macaus Government Information Bureau Victor Chan said that Unitary Police Service Commissioner-General Ma Io Kun had already explained that decisions to deny entry were made in accordance with the law, which states that individuals who may have an impact on social order will not be admitted to the territory. We dont know the professions of the individuals seeking entry, said Chan, according to Ming Pao. So the claim that Hong Kong reporters have been denied entry is not true. Chan said that many non-local journalists had visited Macau since the typhoon, and that they had been able to complete their work smoothly.

Editorial staff from at least five media outlets in Macau have received instructions from upper management to publish more positive stories in the aftermath of the storm and minimise critical reporting, according to the Macau Journalists Association. When asked about the alleged instructions, Chan said: I have no knowledge of this situation, I do not know of this news. He said that the Macanese government respected the media.

- Why is Victor Chan responding that way? When a Hong Kong resident arrives at the Macau immigration control desk, he hands over his Hong Kong ID to the officer. The officer swipes the ID and information appears on the monitor. There is no centralized database that gives the occupation associated with a Hong Kong ID. Even the Hong Kong government does not have such a database for its own citizens, so how can Macau compile one for Hong Kong citizens? And this task is also enormous and complicated, given the ambiguity of "occupation" -- for example, is Ko Chi Sum a movie director, a theater maestro, a teacher or a media commentator? Even he is not sure. So it is not the case that the monitor popped up with "Occupation: Journalist. Action: Reject." If the system says REJECT, it will be for some other reason that won't be discussed in public.

Roy Tam (Neo Democrats)'s Facebook

Maybe we really have to thank England. This typhoon did not cause many casualties in Hong Kong because the infrastructure was well-designed, together with the public service system and the Independent Commission Against Corruptoin.

Sovereignty was transferred to mainland China for 20 years, with various degrees of Red-ification in many areas. Fortunately, even a broken ship has three intact nails.

I have often said that the large-scale infrastructure projects are not really basic infrastructure. But they are additional and unnecessary construction. In other words, White Elephants. These include the Hong Kong-Macau-Zhuhai bridge, the High Speed Rail and the Third Runway at the Hong Kong International Airport. If the money was spent on flood prevention and tree conservation, the damage in this typhoon would be even less.

This time, Macau got hit. I hope the people of Macau are safe, and the Macau government can think about why they can't count on the gambling industry alone. They must know that they can't count on electricity from mainland China. Instead of doling out money, they should build up their infrastructure.

Climate change threatens the coastal areas most of all. The high temperatures in the South China sea turned the tropical storm into a strong typhoon. Environmental protection is not for the next generation; it is for our own generation.

- (The Guardian) August 30, 2017. Heavy monsoon rains have brought Mumbai to a halt for a second day as the worst floods to strike south Asia in years continued to exact a deadly toll. More than 1,200 people have died across India, Bangladesh and Nepal as a result of flooding.

- The people of India should think about why they can't count on electricity/water supply from mainland China. Instead of doling out money to the people, they should build up their own infrastructure. Thus spake Roy Tam to the people of India.

- (Silent Majority for HK) According to the former Hong Kong Weather Observatory director Lam Chiu-ying, Hong Kong was lucky in that the eye of typhoon passed by south of Hong Kong without the wall hitting Hong Kong. Had Hato shifted 20 miles north, Hong Kong would be in a different world. But the eye passed right over Macau, with the strong gales hitting first on the front end of the wall and then again on the back end of the wall. So you can put aside all the rubbish about the superiority of British infrastructure planning. It had everything to do with LUCK.

Video of storm track

- Gary Fan (Neo-Democrats) Facebook

Top pane: The beginning of Macau becoming RED (1967) Mainland China cut off the water supply in conjunction with the leftist riot in Macau to force the Portuguese colonial administration to kneel down on its knees.
Bottom pane: The result of Macau becoming RED (2017) Mainland China cut off the water/electricity and turned Macau into hell.

It is clear to everyone whether the situation in Macau was a natural or manmade disaster.

Over the past several years, pro-establishment people wanted Hong Kong to buy electricity from mainland China and large numbers of patriots oppose the construction of desalination plants. They want the essential needs of a city -- water and electricity -- to be controlled by mainland China. Everybody knows what their real aims are to make Hong Kong's lifeline dependent upon mainland China.

- Cheng Chung-tai's Facebook

If you have to compare a Typhoon Signal #10 with the People's Liberation Army, I  think the latter is more dangerous.

- Who cares about whether you are a government frontline worker, or a civilian volunteer, or a People's Liberation Army soldier? The immediate task is to help Macau recover.

- The discussion of whether the Macau PLA should have been called can wait for later. At this time, if the Honorable Legislative Councilor Cheng Chung-tai has any brilliant ideas for disaster relief, can he please recommend them to us?

- You fucking dickhead! You must have tripped and damaged your brain. You are able to say this because the typhoon did not affect you personally. If your house and everything you own are under water, you wouldn't be saying this. You should ask the storm victims: Would you rather let the typhoon blow everything away instead of letting the PLA come in and clean up? I think they are going to pick up bricks and smash your skull, you fucking bastard!

(Daily Mail with video) July 19, 2017. Horrifying moment a girl, 14, falls into an open drain while crossing flooded street in Nepal and emerges ALIVE from underwater sewer thirty yards along the road.

- This video was promptly changed to Macau after typhoon Hato. The revised video was cut right after the girl fell into the hole without showing how she re-emerged later, so that you get the impression that she never got out. This was used to point out how bad the infrastructure in Communist-ruled Macau was.

(Hong Kong Free Press) August 24, 2017.

Labour Party chairperson Suzanne Wu has resigned from her position and left the party in an act of protest, following disagreements over the way the group handled matters internally.

The Labour Party secretariat said on Wednesday that it earlier received a written notice from Wu, stating she has decided to leave after careful consideration. The partys executive committee made repeated attempts to convince Wu to stay, but respected her ultimate decision, Ming Pao reported. They thanked her for her devotion and contribution.

Wu told In-Media that her resignation was an act of protest, criticising the partys internal structure as being unjust in how it handles matters. She said that she hoped quitting the party would allow it to recognise the problems. Wu also said that she and the party did not have disagreements over their political direction and stressed that she was only leaving the party, not retiring from politics altogether.

Wu took up the position in 2015, replacing former chairman Lee Cheuk-yan. The post will be temporarily filled by Vice-chairman Chiu Shi-shun until the partys elections at the end of the year. During the Legislative Council elections last September, Wu suspended her campaign in order to boost the chances of other pan-democratic candidates in the constituency. Fernando Cheung is currently the partys only lawmaker, following losses by former lawmakers Cyd Ho and Lee Cheuk-yan in the elections.

(Hong Kong Free Press) August 25, 2017.

Labour Party vice-chairperson Cyd Ho has resigned from her position on the executive committee, a day after chairperson Suzanne Wu quit the party citing internal disagreements.

In a statement on Friday, Ho said that the party was in crisis after the resignation of its chairperson, during a time when democrats were facing political persecution and the citys rule of law was in a precarious situation.

It is regrettable that the chairperson expressed her criticisms of the partys meetings publicly, however, I must follow political ethics and take on my political responsibility as of yesterday evening, I have resigned from my position on the executive committee, she said.

When I helped establish the Labour Party in 2011, the aim was to hand over the baton to a new generation of the left. I hope that the continuing young members of the party will be able to thrive, whilst developing the party in a democratically-minded way.

In a statement by the Labour Party issued on the same day, the secretariat said that a meeting had taken place on Wednesday to discuss Wus resignation and departure from the party. Upon reflection, the party acknowledges that there have been flaws in the handling of complaints by the disciplinary committee. The executive committee will write a report of our findings and make suggestions as to what can be improved, and subsequently pass it on to the partys members. Furthermore, the party believes that the standing committee and the executive committee did not handle the issue in a timely and appropriate manner, for which we take responsibility, the statement said.

The party thanked Ho for her longstanding contributions to the executive body.

(Ta Kung Pao) August 26, 2017.

When Suzanne Wu resigned, the word was that she had previously complained about the actions and words of Cyd Ho. The Labour Party Disciplinary Committee held a hearing and found on Wu's behalf. However, when Ho objected, the Disciplinary Committee retreated and said that they will not make any judgment. This was what precipitated Wu's resignation. Yesterday, the Labour Party said that they help a special meeting and found that the Disciplinary Committee had failed to handle Wu's complaint in an appropriate manner. As a result, the Executive Committee will write a report. Executive Committee member Cyd Ho was the principal involved, and therefore bears the political responsibility. At the meeting, Ho resigned as Executive Committee member and deputy secretary-general. But she did not resign from the Labour Party.

In her statement, Ho was petulant: "I am one of the principals. The chairwoman complained about my critical opinions expressed during meetings. That is regrettable."

What kind of party is the Labour Party? Just Suzanne Wu and Cyd Ho could turn the entire party into total chaos? Their positions can switch so rapidly back and forth? Who can tell who is right or wrong here?

- Suzanne Wu resigned from the Labour Party because she felt that the Disciplinary Committee had let her down. Cyd Ho accepted responsibility but she did not resign. Why? Because there is a Legislative Council by-election coming up in Hong Kong Island for Nathan Law's vacated seat. And Cyd Ho wants the Labour Party to help her win. If she is to resign, it will be after that by-election.

(Wen Wei Po) August 24, 2017.

In the 2016 Legislative Council elections, Labour Party incumbents Lee Cheuk-yan and Cyd Ho lost their posts. Lee Cheuk-yan accepted responsibility and Suzanne Wu became the new chairperson to show that the party was ready to promote the next generation. However the true power in the Executive Committee still remained in the hands of Lee Cheuk-yan and Cyd Ho. The reason is very simple: Lee Cheuk-yan controls the party finances, and the cadres are his loyalists. So he did not worry that Suzanne Wu would take over from him.

But Suzanne Wu was no slouch. She wanted to take over not just in name, but in actual power. The key is that she cannot let the gerontocrats come back. On radio, she said that Cyd Ho will not run for re-election as long as Suzanne Wu is Labour Party chairman. But with the jailing of Nathan Law and Joshua Wong, there is now a vacant Legco seat in Hong Kong Island. Based upon the 2016 Legco election results, Cyd Ho would have a good chance to win. So Cy Ho is also excited and she has the support of Lee Cheuk Yan in this.

But Suzanne Wu had already said that she will never let Cyd Ho run again. If the decision was put to a vote by the Labour Party Executive Committee, the outcome is predicable. In that case, how can Suzanne Wu continue to function as chairperson? And if Cyd Ho runs again, Lee Cheuk-yan will want to do so again. Since the Labour Party does not have the resources to run candidates in many districts, this means that Suzanne Wu will have no chance to run in the by-election/election herself. So it was a good idea for her to quit now.

This incident showed the hypocrisy of the opposition politicians. They say that they want to hand over the reins to the next generation. In truth, this was all of show because they cling on to the real power as long as possible. If they lose their legislative seats as well as their power, they would be nobodies. Ultimately, this is about power and money.

The Prison Notebooks were a series of essays by the Italian neo-marxist Antonio Gramsci who was imprisoned by the Fascist. Gramsci wrote more than 30 notebooks and 3,000 pages of history and analysis. These Prison Notebooks are considered a highly original contribution to 20th century political theory.

In Hong Kong, we are now getting Joshua Wong's Prison Notebooks.

Joshua Wong's Facebook:

Floor diagram of prison cell, as drawn personally by Joshua Wong.

- (SpeakOut HK) August 24, 2017.

There are ten named items in this diagram. Joshua Wong managed to spell six of them wrong.

平面圖 (2D diagram) ->平面團 (2D group)

廁所 (toilet) ->  次所 (secondary room)

洗手盆 (handwashing basin) -> 洗手盤 (handwashing plate)

儲物箱 (storage box) ->儲物廂 (storage side-room)

鐵欄 (iron gate) -> 鐵闌 (iron railing)

硬板床 (hard board bed) -> 硬版床 (hard version bed)

- Dear Joshua, you are going to have plenty of time on hand in the big house. You should really try to spend more time to learn to read and write.

- No amount of learning can correct a reading/writing impediment. It is well-known that Joshua Wong is dyslexic.

- Why bother? When he comes out, he can always find the usual people to ghostwrite everything for him. On this occasion, the Demosisto folks were too elated about a personally drawn diagram and did not notice the spelling mistakes.

- Actually, since this was in his personal handwriting, the Demosisto folks can't change it. Their other option was to suppress it.

- What is wrong with a Legislative Councilor not knowing how to read or write? His job does not involve reading or writing. His job will be to show up in the Legislative Council and raise his hand every five minutes to demand for quorum to be counted. The rest of time he just have to show up at the RTHK City Forum and exchange insults with the Victoria Park grandpas.

- (HKG Pao) August 25, 2017.

We asked a tutor to give a test to seven primary school students. The tutor read the above six terms to the students who had been given a piece of paper with missing words to be filled out. For example, the teacher read "洗手盆" and the paper had "洗手_" on it already. The student was supposed to write in the missing word "盆".

The seven children are between 8 to 10 years old studying in Primary 2 to 4. These children should have come across these terms in their daily lives.

For the students, one in Primary 4 (age 10), one in Primary 3 (age 9) and two in Primary 2 (age 8) got all six words right. Two Primary 2 (age 8) students got two words wrong. One Primary 2 (age 8) got four words wrong. Every student got "handwashing basin" and "toilet" right.

By comparison, our university student Joshua Wong had gotten those six words wrong. What does that tell us?

The New York Times think Joshua Wong is a student who should be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Joshua Wong thinks that he would be elected into the Legislative Council. Is Joshua Wong the pride of Hong Kong, or the shame of Hong Kong?

- (HKG Pao) August 25, 2017.

According to a source, the Correctional Services Department does not allow inmates to draw diagrams of their facilities to be circulated outside (CAP 234, Section 25 Prison Rules). The Department high brass are concerned and are looking into the matter. Our reporter inquired and we were told that no comments will be made about ongoing investigations.

- Article 27 of the Hong Kong Basic Law states that "Hong Kong residents shall have freedom of speech; of the press and of publication; freedom of association; of assembly, of procession and of demonstration; and the right and freedom to form and join trade unions, and to strike."

Joshua Wong is exercising his freedom of speech with the diagram and his freedom of publication to have it published in Apple Daily. Next, he is going to lead the inmates to exercise their freedom of assembly in a procession to strike against the repressive prison regime.

- If a prisoner violates discipline during his term, the usual penalty is an increase in jail time.

(SCMP) Nord Anglia international school row shows up Hong Kongs bigoted politicians. By Albert Cheng. June 15, 2017.

Rivals from across the political spectrum have united in an effort to block an international school from having a new campus at a shopping mall in Tin Wan, west of Aberdeen in Southern district.

In the past, politicians have objected to community facilities on various grounds; others have blocked projects seen to undermine the value of their properties. The long list of necessary but unwelcome amenities includes a clinic for AIDS patients, a halfway house for the mentally ill, columbariums, landfills, an incinerator, and a mosque in the New Territories. The not-in-my-backyard mentality is widespread. However, the level of political bigotry among local councillors has recently been taken to new heights.

A case in point is Nord Anglia Educations plan to open an international school at the Tin Wan Shopping Centre, which is now being refurbished. The proposed campus would occupy 3 storeys of the five-storey complex, which was taken over by a private developer from Link Reit in 2015.

Two weeks ago, at a meeting of the Southern District Councils committee for district development and housing, councillors of various political stripes sought to derail the plan.

The Democratic Partys Chai Man-hon tabled a motion to object to the scheme. Not to be outshone, Chan Fu-ming of the pro-Beijing Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong sponsored a proposal calling on the Education Bureau to reject the application. They are worried the school would worsen congestion and squeeze out shops more relevant to the daily lives of the public housing tenants.

But the politicians should have targeted the Link instead. It was the Link that took over shopping malls in public housing estates from the government in the first place, and its policy to maximise revenue has resulted in complaints from the tenants that their needs are being neglected.

The new owners strategy is to have a school as an anchor tenant. The remaining 12 shops would include a bank, barber, bakery, fast-food restaurant and supermarket, in a new mix aimed to generate a viable flow of people from within and outside the locality.

Meanwhile, Nord Anglia has pledged to impose strict measures to prevent jams. The school is also prepared to actively integrate itself into the local community. As a sweetener, it has offered to open up its campus facilities after classes for residents groups from Tin Wan Estate. Perhaps it can also reserve some free places for children from local public housing.

There is such great demand from both local and expatriate families for quality kindergarten and elementary international schooling that the Tin Wan places have been quickly oversubscribed.

Nevertheless, because of the political hiccup, Nord Anglia is unlikely to open on schedule in September, and has already refunded frustrated parents.

One would expect our young breed of activists, baptised by Occupy Central, to be liberal minded and tolerant of different sectors sometimes conflicting social needs. That seems to be wishful thinking.

Demosisto, a one-year-old political party of mostly student activists, has jumped on the bandwagon. Its chairman, Nathan Law Kwun-chung, who represents the Hong Kong Island constituency in the legislature, was the first to put up banners opposing the school. He insists tenants in the public housing estate would not benefit from the luxury international school.

Ironically, Law tweeted on Tuesday to highlight a Forbes commentary headlined, Singapore is beating Hong Kong as Asias best place to do business. Apparently, it hasnt dawned on him that adequate international school places is a critical factor for expatriates to consider moving to Hong Kong for commerce and business.

Demosisto secretary general Joshua Wong Chi-fung crashed a district council meeting to press councillors to sign a placard on the spot to object to the international school. He is eyeing the Island constituency at the next Legislative Council election. Tin Wan is supposed to be his launch pad. The good of the wider community is simply not on his radar.

(Bastille Post) August 24, 2017.

Demosisto's Nathan Law was disqualified as legislative councilor and also sent to jail for the taking of Civic Square. But his previous community work has borne results.

The Tin Wan Shopping Mall used to be a ghost city. Tin Wan only has a population of 20,000, so the business volume at the shopping mall is limited. There is no way to operate a student tutoring service or a dry-cleaning laundry store because there won't be enough clients. The busiest business used to be a restaurant that caters to mainland tourist groups. But when the mainland tourist groups stopped coming, they are having a hard time.

So the Link sold the shopping mall to Ace Precision Investments Limited for $486 million. That private company signed a deal with Nord Anglia School (Hong Kong) Limited) to operate an international school that was scheduled to open next month.

Ace Precision's plan was to use the Nord Anglia School as the anchor tenant to bring in traffic. They planned to rent the other 12 vacant locations to a supermarket, a convenience store, a household items store, a bakery, Chinese/western healthcare clinics and light meal restaurants in order to serve the community again. The Nord Anglia School also agreed to open its meeting halls and facilities for residents and organizations to use after hours. The shopping mall had already been completely renovated, with brand new restrooms, etc.

But Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Demosisto saw the opportunity to launch an attack. They said that the international school did not serve residents in the Tin Wan community. They said that the streets will be congested when parents bring their children to school and pick them up after schools.

In May, the Southern District Council voted to oppose the project. At the same time, the bank which provided the mortgage to Ace Precision Investments issued a letter of disagreement with the rental contract between Ace Precision Investments and Nord Anglia School.

At this point, the school is dead. When the school was first announced, enrolment was oversubscribed. But now the school will have to refund the tuition fees to the parents, who will have to find schools for their children at short notice. The landlord will have an empty shopping mall, which will remain a ghost city. The community residents will not have a shopping mall. This is an outcome in which everybody loses.

- It is not true that everybody loses. Demosisto was able to flex its muscles to show that they can force everybody to accept a losing proposal. Therefore they are the biggest (and only) winner in this.

- Also, the community residents can stand tall and proud to say that they fought off globalization and preserved their own way of life and collective memories.

- Nathan Law had his personal reasons for sabotaging the international school. He was asking residents to donate money to him so he can rent a store front for $10,000 per month at the underused shopping mall for an office to continue to serve the community even though he is not a legislator anymore. This is a way of making sure that Joshua Wong will be elected District Councilor and then Legislative Councilor later. But of course all of this is up in smoke because the convicts Joshua Wong and Nathan Law are not eligible to run for elections for the next five years.

(Wen Wei Po) August 26, 2017. {SPOOF}

This is the darkest day in Hong Kong. I was sentenced to jail under the SAR government's suppression and the cooperation of the executive, legislative and judicial branches.

When I am handcuffed and taken onto the bus to go to the prison, I will raise my noble head up high. I will not let any insult fall on what I have done. I believe that many people will continue to demonstrate on my behalf. Unfortunately most people have to work for a living, and only 20,000 out of 7 million showed up. But if each of the 20,000 donates $100 to me, I will have $2,000,000; if each donates $1,000, I will have $20,000,000. Unfortunately, I only received $600,000 or so in donations, not enough even to pay for the legal fees. This shows that the level of awakening of the people of Hong Kong is still not high enough. But as soon as my sugar daddy (United States) wires the money over, all my money problems will be solved.

Frankly, I am somewhat disappointed with the response of society this time. I sacrificed myself for the interests of the people of Hong Kong. But some people do not think that I represent the people of Hong Kong. They smeared me for breaking the law by using violence. They said that I deserve to go to jail. Such people are too ignorant. You should know that even patronizing prostitutes can be thought of either as cool or dirty. When you patronize a prostitute out of lust, you are dirty; when you patronize a prostitute because you want to protect her right to work, you are cool. Rule-of-law means that you have to sentence us leniently on account of our noble ideals. But if you throw the book at us, it means that the executive, legislative and judiciary branches are collaborating on political suppression.

We are fighting for democracy, with some of us fighting for Hong Kong independence. The government will not accede to our demands. So we are forced to use violence to express our will. This is not called violent opposition; this is just "civil disobedience"! We merely charged the police lines, threw some bricks and hurt a dozen or so security guards. Nobody got killed. So what is the big deal?

Although Occupy Central affected the normal lives of certain people and caused economic losses, these are nothing compared to Democracy and Freedom. Hong Kong was losing $1.6 billion every day, but this is trivial compared to the pricelessness of Democracy and Freedom. You couldn't buy Democracy and Freedom for a few trillion dollars. And once you have Democracy and Freedom, you have everything. Just look at the Color Revolutions in Libya, Egypt and elsewhere. The people in those places can immigrate at will -- they can immigrate to Germany or France if they want. It doesn't sound nice when they call themselves refugees, but this is how they can get sympathy.

Today we are doing everything possible to cause chaos in Hong Kong because we want to fight for the right of Hongkongers to become refugees. Our slogan is "We would rather be British dogs than Chinese persons." Our goals are noble. The unreasonable SAR judiciary may think that we broke the law. Yes, we broke the law, but we broke the law in order to defend justice. This is the modernistic spirit of "breaking the law in order to attain justice."

This is fucking outrageous. "Breaking the law in order to attain justice" is going to send me to jail. Is there any justice under heaven? Heavens, heavens, is this One Country Two Systems? This is more like One Country 1.5 Systems. But it is nothing to suffer a little for the sake of the people of Hong Kong. As Alvin Yeung taught us, "Having a criminal record will make our lives more colorful." This is the truth. I don't have to study, I don't have to work, I only have to resist and curse this undemocratic world and I will gain the respect and love of the developed nations. They will give me scholarships, they will let me further my studies at world-class top-flight universities, and they can even get me the Nobel Peace Prize. I am very grateful to the democratic pioneers -- they will not let their own children to "break the law in order to attain justice" and thus they gave me the opportunity to earn a criminal record.

Oh, sorry, it is my turn for the "cavity search." Don't worry, because they are using advanced x-ray technology nowadays. But I miss the traditional 'single-finger poke' which was painful but sensual, just like "breaking the law in order to attain justice." I thank Professor Benny Tai, Senior Counsel Martin Lee, money fat man Jimmy Lai, legislator Alvin Yeung -- you are the ones who make my life so colorful.

(Oriental Daily) August 25, 2017. Joshua Wong was sent to prison immediately on August 17. One week later, Joshua Wong said that he has not received a single letter yet.

- As a prison old hand points out, you can't send a letter to Joshua Wong c/o Pik Up Correctional Institution. Names don't mean anything to the prisons. You have to send the letter to P123456 (whatever Joshua Wong's permanent prison ID number is). He must not be very popular with the prison guards or inmates as none of them will tell him this simple fact of life. Or else they told him but, as usual, he never listens.

- Don't wish for letters from the outside!!!

(Oriental Daily) September 3, 2017.

Raphael Wong Ho-ming said that he received a large number of letters over the past two days from his supporters. But he gently reminds everybody that people should pay the correct postage on their letters, because any shortage is paid for out of his prison wages. He is worried that he will have nothing left.

If Joshua Wong wants letters, then I am sure that the Blue Ribbon Facebooks can organize a campaign to get him tens of thousands of letters with insufficient postage.

(SCMP) Letter from a Hong Kong prison misses the point on freedom. By Alex Lo. September 5, 2017.

One of the most talked-about events of the past week has been the online publication of Letter from Prison from jailed Occupy protest leader Alex Chow Yong-kang.

It has been circulated thousands of times and collected many more likes. Maybe we are witnessing the birth of a new contribution to the venerable prison literature of the past century.

Without democracy, Chow wrote, any talk about the rule of law is a luxury.

So I guess the appeal court that has jailed him for seven months is a kangaroo court, no?

He then cited author George Orwell: In a world of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.

Hong Kong, he implies, has become such a place.

At a time of proliferation of lies, he wrote, we must be courageous to tell the truth to society. Do not be afraid of the powerful and rich and keep silent. We ought to know silence, cynicism, apathy and resignation are the biggest accomplice to all sins and injustice.

Quite, but I would add that some people keep silent because they are afraid of going against public opinion, or some fiery segments of it. Also Orwell never said or wrote the words Chow quoted; you just cant trust what you read on the internet.

I suspect the (mis)quote probably morphed from something a 20th century Marxist, the Italian Antonio Gramsci, once wrote: To tell the truth, to arrive together at the truth, is a communist and revolutionary act.

You can find it in his collected works.

The whole point of Orwells famous novel, 1984, is that in a world of universal deceit and political oppression, not only can you not say a true word, you cant even think it.

Here in Hong Kong, though, a young protest leader serving a minor sentence can write and publish whatever he likes from prison and be treated like a hero. His message is freely broadcast to all four corners of the world.

He tells us we are being deceived and lied to, but that he and his comrades know the truth and are not afraid to tell us.

Isnt that the whole point of a free society, that you can believe in and fight for Jesus, Mohammed, or the Goddess of Democracy and what not, and think anyone who doesnt agree with you is either a doofus or a knave?

(Oriental Daily) August 24, 2017.

On the morning of February 8-9 2016, there was a riot in Mong Kok. The police reviewed the surveillance videos and found 28-year-old kitchen worker So Tak-shing in the crowd. At one point, So had pulled down his surgical mask to shout. The videos also showed So in mask and gloves digging out bricks from the sidewalk. In June 2016, the police found So and arrested him for participation in a riot. Under police caution, So said: "I was only digging out bricks. I did not throw any bricks at the police."

Under police caution, So admitted on video that he dug out the bricks and placed them into a garbage bin. Another individual used a handcart to take the garbage bin away. After So left the scene, he learned from the news reports that someone was throwing bricks that night. So told the police that he had intended to use those bricks to block obstruct traffic on Portland Street.

The police confirmed that the two sections of the roadway covered areas of 2.25m x 7.8m and 4.6m x 3.1m respectively. The cost of repairs was HK$23,000.

The defense pleaded that the defendant committed the crime "in the heat of the moment" and is now repentant. Confederation of Trade Union's former legislative councilor Lee Cheuk-yan wrote a letter to say that the defendant joined the union in 2007 and praised him as an "idealistic and righteous young man."

The magistrate Clement Lee Hing-nin said that the case was serious. Even though the defendant did not riot himself, he dug out the bricks and assisted the rioters. His actions helped the others to use bricks to attack persons at the scene including the police. "If you did not take part, the other people wouldn't have it so easy." Therefore the magistrate sentenced So Tak-shing to 4 months in jail for each charge to be served concurrently.

(Oriental Daily) August 29, 2017.

25-year-old waiter Tang Ho-yin was charged with one count of rioting during the Mong Kok riot. He was arrested in April when the police identified him as having thrown bricks at the police. The prosecution said that they intend to show a number of surveillance videos. Tang said that he intends to plead guilty. The next hearing on December 15 for the guilty plea/sentencing.

(Oriental Daily) December 15, 2017.

The defendant Tang Yo-yin was arrested on November 10, 2016. Under caution, he said: "For fun's sake I rattled a few street signs and threw some bricks. I held no malicious intent."

The defense pleaded that the defendant suffers from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, which may explain what he did at the time. He may have been influenced by the atmosphere at the scene rather than just hating the police.

The defense pointed out that the level of violence used by those present was only "moderate." Besides it had been a "terrifying night." The judge disagreed with the characterization of the level of violence and said that it had indeed been a "terrifying night" for the police. There were 60 police officers at the scene of the crime (intersection of Shan Tung Street and Nathan Road southbound lanes). About half of them sustained injuries even though they were equipped with helmets and shields. The defendant stood in the front and threw bricks. This was a high degree of participation.

The defendant was allowed to remain on bail while he meets with his own psychiatrist to come up with a report. The judge stated that a jail sentence is assured.

(Oriental Daily) February 9, 2018.

Chef Chan Cheuk-hin was previously convicted of one count of disturbing the public order (specifically, by throwing a trash bin onto the roadway) and sentenced to 21 days in jail. Chan filed an appeal. Today in court, Chan said that he has decided to withdraw his appeal. As a result, Chan will have to serve the 7 remaining days on his term.

Part-time tutor Chan Yu-kei was previously convicted of one count of assaulting a police officer and sentenced to three months in jail. Today in court, the judge heard the argument and rejected the appeal. Chan was sent back to jail immediately.

(Hong Kong Free Press) February 10, 2018.

The appeal application of a protester convicted of assaulting the police during the 2016 Mong Kok unrest was denied by a judge on Friday. Another demonstrator guilty of disorderly conduct withdrew his appeal.

The pair were arrested after heated clashes broke out between protesters and police over the governments clearance of street hawkers during Lunar New Year.

In 2016, protester Chan Cheuk-hin who was accused of throwing a rubbish bin out into the road during the protest was found guilty of one count of behaving in a disorderly manner. Chan Yu-kei was convicted of one count of assaulting a police officer. They were jailed for 21 days and three months respectively.

The pair appealed their convictions. Chan Cheuk-hin, who was unrepresented, told the High Court on Friday that he will not continue with his appeal and Judge Judianna Barnes withdrew his application. He must complete the remaining seven days of imprisonment, Ming Pao reported.

At the appeal hearing, Chan Yu-keis counsel argued that the police sergeant could not see who had assaulted him, and that Chan may not have been the attacker. However, the judge said Chan did not leave the sight of one police officer who said he witnessed Chans attack on the sergeant.

Chan also argued that the first instance judge did not deal with his claim that a police officer had hit him on the head. But Judge Barnes said that, at the trial, Chan did not testify about the matter, nor did the defence cross-examine the officer on this point.

The judge said that although it was Chans right to not testify on the stand, it was difficult for the court to determine whether he had acted out of self-defence. She added that Chan had not been the officers target during the protests, and determined it was not a case of self-defence.

Judge Barnes denied Chans appeal application. He must continue serving his jail sentence immediately.

(HK01) August 21, 2017. Carrie Lam said yesterday that as a mother herself, she can understand how the mothers of Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow feel. That evening, Alex Chow's father called up a radio station. He said that if Carrie Law wants to show that she cares for the mothers, she should have done so on the day when the court ruling was issued. So it was unfair for her to wait until today. What does he want to tell Carrie Lam? He said that while he respects her for having done a lot of Hong Kong, "every mother has motherly love, so she should not be using motherly love to increase her own political capital."

Internet Comments:

- There is total agreement on this demand, beginning with the following parents who were in the news recently:

- (Apple Daily) August 17, 2017. On the eve of the court ruling, Nathan Law and his mother were interviewed by TV Most. She cried in front of the camera: "Young people are being suppressed for speaking out. Which mother would not be heartbroken?" She denounced senior government officials as looking to make a living as opposed to working for Hong Kong. "These people want to oppress young people!" She said that she brought her three sons from Shanwei to immigrate to Hong Kong so that they can grown up in a society of rule-of-law and democracy. She said that mainland China has rule-by-man so that you cannot criticize the authorities. After the handover of Hong Kong back to China, she knew that Hong Kong would change but not so quickly. "In mainland China, Mao Zedong said that power grows out of the barrel of a gun. In Hong Kong, the government is willing people silently with the wave of a pen. This is even terrifying than China." She said that Nathan Law used to introverted and only interested in playing games at home. "I never expected that he would go to the front. That scared me at first. But he said that he is doing this for our society. If he were selfish, he wouldn't have stepped up and then society won't be changed. I had nothing to say. She said that she felt uneasy as a mother: "Young people speak up not for personal gains and then get suppressed. What mother wouldn't be heartbroken?"

- (RTHK) August 17, 2017.

After the court session was over, Nathan Law's father was asked how he felt. Was the ruling unexpected? He only said: "I don't want to say anything."

- (Oriental Daily) August 18, 2017. Alex Chow's mother began to cry even before the court session began. After the ruling was issued, she cried out aloud. Alex Chow's father was calmer. He declined to comment on the court ruling, but said that he was proud of the actions of his son, Joshua Wong and Nathan Law. He said that he completely supports what his son did, because it was done for a better future Hong Kong and not for personal gains. It was a selfless decision. He said that the purpose of the government's judicial review was to make sure that they don't break the law again. But he thinks that there will be an opposite effect to cause more people to awaken politically.

- (Ming Pao) August 18, 2017. Our reporter interviewed Alex Chow's father. He said that he was heartbroken by the jail term. He said that his son did not do it for personal gain. "As parents, we are proud of what the three young men did. We support them completely. We have never regretted supporting them."

- (DotDotNews) August 24, 2017. On radio, Alex Chow's father said: "She did not have to bring this up on the day before yesterday. But why did she tell us that she is the mother of two twenty-something-year-olds?" The radio host said: "The reporter asked her." Alex Chow's mother then said: "Every mother has motherly love, but please do not use motherly love to increase one's political capital."

In truth, the reporter asked Carrie Lam: "Joshua Wong's mother and Nathan Law's mother have some questions for you ... can you answer them as a mother yourself?" Carrie Lam answered that she is the mother of two twenty-something-year-olds and that she had mentioned to the various individuals in October 2014 that their actions must be lawful no matter how noble their intentions are.

- "When your son errs, you as a parent can forgive him. But an error is an error, and you can't erase it just because this is your son."

- "True fatherly love is to warn him up front, instead of blaming other people after the fact."

- "He can tolerate his son's errors, but the law cannot allow criminal activities to go unpunished."

- (Ming Pao) August 18, 2017. Three hours before the court ruling was issued, Joshua Wong's mother made a post at her son's Facebook. She quoted from the Bible to encourage her son to keep the faith. She criticized the Secretary for Justice for strangling the enthusiasm and idealism of young people. "Why has Hong Kong fallen to this point, so as to treat this generation of children this way?"

- Joshua Wong's father and mother did not show up in court. Previously Father vs. Son in Hong Kong LGBT Online Campaign Battle, December 7, 2016.

- (Ming Pao) August 22, 2017. On Facebook, Joshua Wong's father Roger Wong posted on "cold words in a hot summer": "Your two sons studied at Cambridge University. One of them has graduated and is a corporate manager in mainland China. How can you say that you understand how the mothers of the prisoners feel?"

- Internet users quoted a classical Chinese saying: 養不教、父之過 "When someone is raised up without being taught anything, the fault lies with the father."

Roger Wong's Facebook responds:

August 23 18:18: I just changed a setting to allow only Friends to comment (everybody used to be able to comment)

August 23 15:54: Various Fifty-cent gangers, if your bosses have a budget, please someone with better quality. Thanks!

- (HKG Pao) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. October 2, 2017.

On Facebook, Roger Wong wrote: "When he goes out, he never turns the lights and air conditioner off. The maid has to do this for him. But I find it somewhat intolerable that he always takes his shoes off in the middle of the living room when the shoe shelf is right on the side. He never closes drawers even though it only requires a gentle push. Today he is in jail and he has finally learned how to make his own bed. I never imagined that he would be able to make his own bed ..."

What Roger Wong was unable to teach Joshua Wong to do in 21 years was finally realized by the Pik Uk correctional officers. The Wong family should be celebrating.

Joshua Wong is a typical Kong child. The so-called Kong child appears to be quite knowledgeable with respect to things such as the Math Olympiad, Cambridge English, piano grades, etc, but he has not even the most basic survival skills (such as washing dishes, cleaning up, making beds, cooking, ...).

While Joshua Wong talks about how he will lead us to create a brand new world, his bold visions do not mesh with the image of him not knowing how to fold a blanket. Can I trust a person who opens a drawer but never closes it to destroy the old world and rebuild from scratch?

From Occupy Central to now, Joshua Wong and friends wanted to bring down the establishment, bring down the system, bring down morality, bring down old values ... they say that everything is flawed and they have bring down everything and start anew. Yet, you can't even close a drawer. When you bring Hong Kong down, can you rebuild it?

Internet comments:

- Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow are not in jail for exercising their freedom of speech. They can say whatever they want before, during and after the Civic Square incident. They are not in jail for exercising their freedom of assembly. They were able to hold an assembly with police approval until 10pm that night. But at 1020pm, the three called on the attendees to join them to forcibly break into Government Headquarters. The result was:

(SCMP) During the incident, a total of 10 security guards at the Central Government Offices got injured while they were preventing the rally participants from entering the area. Most of them suffered from slight injuries, such as tenderness, bruises and swelling. Security officer Chan Kei-lun was more seriously injured. He suffered from bruises and swelling on his left foot toe and a slight fracture near his first phalanx. He took sick leave for a total of 39 days.

The three were charged with and convicted on unlawful assembly and/or incitement of others to join an unlawful assembly.

- Have Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow and their parents showed any concern for the 10 injured security guards? No. Why? Because these security guards are little people. During the Resistance, sacrifices must sometimes be made. It is better that little people make sacrifices because we need the celebrity politicians to continue to lead us until victory is achieved. Long Live the Resistance! Long Live Freedom! Long Live Democracy! Death to Carrie Lam! Death to Xi Jinping! Death to the Chinese Communist Party!

- The security guards get paid the royal wage of $34.50 per hour and, when they took the jobs, they knew about the inherent risks. Chan Kei-lun got to take 39 paid days off to stay home and watch television. How can he possibly complain?

- The defence argued that Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow had christened the area in front of the Government Headquarters as Civic Square. Once so designated, it means that all citizens can enter Civic Square. However, the area was gated by the government at the time. Therefore Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow called on those at the assembly to join them to enter Civic Square. They did not call for violence and they did not anticipate violence. They did not expect the security guards would actually line up to hold the demonstrators back. Clashes occurred. There is no evidence that Wong, Law and Chow personally hurt any of the 10 security guards, and they cannot be held responsible for the actions of others.

- What is this nonsense? Can I designate your living room as My Toilet and defecate there? Or your apartment as My New Home and move in?

- Wong, Law and Chow knew that they messed up on September 26, 2014. You can see their behavior since then.

On September 26, 2014, they expected no violence but 10 security guards were injured.

On December 1, 2014, the last great battle of Occupy Central was fought outside Government Headquarters (see #075). A violent battle was predicted, as demonstrators showed up with shields, bamboo poles, rocks and bottles. Wong, Law and Chow did not take part. Joshua Wong was spotted bringing instant noodle cups to watch the action on live television inside the Legislative Council building. Alex Chow told the press that there is a division of labor with him being assigned responsibilities other than charging the police line.

This past Sunday, Joshua Wong called on people to march to support the 16 prisoners of conscience. However, he re-emphasized that this demonstration march shall follow the principles of "Peace, Reason and Non-Violence." He said this repeatedly to make sure that he cannot be charged if Hong Kong Indigenous crashes the party with "valiant resistance."

- If Wong, Law and Chow got 6 to 8 months for what they did, then Yau Wai-ching and Leung Chung-hand must be looking at 12 months of jail time for what they did (#601). This is a no-brainer.

- (Ta Kung Pao) August 23, 2017. Roger Wong said that Carrie Lam got the timeline wrong. The taking of Civic Square took place on September 26, 2014. Several weeks later Carrie Lam met with the student leaders in a televised debate when she told them not to break the law while pursuing their ideals of democracy.

The fact is that while Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow are young, they are not three-year-old babies. Could they be pieces of blank white paper who know absolutely nothing about these basic facts of life before Carrie Lam told them? Why is Roger Wong blaming Carrie Lam for not telling them earlier before September 26th? Where were the parents? Why did the parents never bother to tell their children that it is wrong to break the law? They had more than 20 years to do so but apparently never bothered.

In this matter, Carrie Lam spoke straightforwardly in defense of the spirit of rule-of-law. She does not need to use "motherly love" as her political capital. In like manner, "fatherly love" should not be used as capital to gain sympathy and self-justification.

- (Oriental Daily) August 22, 2017.

A banner appeared outside Hong Kong University MTR station exit C2 on Belcher's Street, Kennedy Town. The words are for the "Occupy Trio" and the message was "Their children stayed home to watch; other people's children end up with criminal records."

- It was a magnificent display of fatherly love for Benny Tai to forbid his son from participating in the unlawful activities of Occupy Central, because a criminal record will mean that his son can never become a lawyer.

- That is your speculation. The truth is that Benny Tai must have a more important mission for his son, such as becoming a judge on the Court of Appeal and freeing all political prisoners of conscience.

August 7, 13:09: Righteous friends, please forward -- I just walked down Great George Street and saw the bitches Lau Siu-lai and Tanya Chan shouting for people to donate money to them. I immediately called the police and tell them someone is unlawfully soliciting. In less than 3 minutes, uniformed police officers arrived on the scene. Those bitches skedaddled immediately. I will call the police every time that I see them.
Good! Citizens should denounce suspected unlawful activities.

(Wen Wei Po) August 21, 2017.

On August 6, Lau Siu-lai and legislator Tanya Chan got together to solicit money. That afternoon, Lau, Chan and some aides set up near Patterson Street in the Causeway Bay district. While Chan was screaming her head off on her megaphone, Lau stood as still as a tree next to her. Our reporter observed them for more than half an hour and saw very few donors. After more than one hour, there was less than $300 in the box. Suddenly Lau nervously took off and left the scene. Very soon, some uniformed police officers came and spoke to Tanya Chan. The assistant put the donation box underneath the table. Some passersby speculate that a citizen had filed a police report against persons soliciting donations without official authorization. Our reporter checked the government notices at the Home Offices Department, and this "donation campaign" was not listed either as application or approval. Thus, Lau and Chan were most likely engaged in unlawful solicitation.

(Wen Wei Po) August 21, 2017

Lau Siu-lai was disqualified on July 14 as legislative council on account that her oath of office was not solemn and sincere. Since then she has been complaining about being financially stressed and therefore she is soliciting donations to keep her Legislative Councilor's office running and pay for the legal fees.

On the afternoon of August 13, we received a tip that Lau Siu-lai and others were soliciting donations unlawfully outside a certain elementary school in Prince Edward, Mong Kok district. We got there and found Lau Siu-lai and a dozen or so people taking over half the sidewalk. There were about 10 "Teacher Siu-lai's Democracy Classroom" flags. Pedestrians had to step into the hot sun in order to get around them.

There were three transparent donation boxes, but there does not appear to be a lot of money in them. Some of the volunteers mentioned "Legislative Councilor" when they solicit for donations. But when the target person ask, "Is the Legislative Councilor soliciting money to pay for legal fees?" the volunteers did not clarify.

At about 530pm, Lau Siu-lai appeared to have enough of the heat. So she left with a male aide. Because she is used to taking taxis, she walked to Pioneer Centre and looked around. The male aide pointed the direction, and they spent about 10 minutes before they found the Prince Edward MTR station entrance 100 meters away. So it seems that Lau Siu-lai who lives in Kowloon West and claims to be down-to-earth really does not know the MTR system there.

The highlight of Lau Siu-lai's schedule on August 13th was attendance at the HK Community Cinema showing of the film <Ten Years> at the Lai Chi Kok Community Center. The official event poster says that Legislative Councilor Lau Siu-lai and two of the film directors will interact with the audience. The court ruling had included an injunction against Lau Siu-lai from acting as a member of the Legislative Council and claiming to act as a member of the Legislative Council. Neither Lau Siu-lai nor her Teacher Siu-lai's Classroom website has corrected this mistake.  Lau Siu-lai may be charged with contempt of court.

HK Community Center showing of <Ten Years> ... Lau Siu-lai, legislative councilor

The showing of the movie was plagued with problems with the sub-titles and sound system. Several dozen spectators were annoyed and left before the movie ended. Afterwards, Lau Siu-lai and the two directors were invited to interact with the audience. An audience member denounced the stories as narrow-minded and sensationalistic such that young people can be misled into activities that hurt themselves and society. This person also did not think that learning putonghua is in conflict with using dialect, and said that he was sorry that his children never got the chance to learn putonghua. Lau Siu-lai and the directors found it awkward to answer such questions.

So the host quickly ended the session, and informed the audience that the organizers cannot have any financial transactions within a facility rented from the government. Therefore they will wait outside the door. She said: "You know what I mean, so you should know what to do."

About 10 people including Lau Siu-lai stood outside the door with small donation boxes. They urged the departing spectators to donate money. Some young people said among themselves: "Didn't the poster say that it was completely free?" "Forget it, if they stand at the door with their hands out, we are forced to give." Another spectator told our reporter: "If they said beforehand that this movie will cost some money, I will definitely give; but I hate people who use a sleight of hand to force people to fork money over."

(Wen Wei Po) August 21, 2017.

According to Land Registry, Lau Siu-lai owns at least two properties, one in New Territories and another for herself to live in Kowloon. The two properties are worth more than $10 million in value.

In 2011, Lau Siu-lai bought a 500+ sq ft property in Hung Hom for herself to live in at $4.3 million. Our reporter checked with the bank and found out that the property is estimated to be worth $7.6 million now. Along with her property in New Territories, she is easily worth $10 million plus. Even though she has been disqualified as legislative councilor, her university teaching post pays several tens of thousands per month. No wonder she has previously told the media that she can afford to ride in taxis the rest of her life.

After many days of observations late last month, Lau Siu-lai always flags taxis when she goes out. Even though her apartment is just 5 minutes away from the MTR station and she can walk 10 minutes to reach Hung Hom East Rail Station and the bus terminal, she still takes taxis. Lau Siu-lai may claim that she does everything for the grassroots, her own lifestyle is definitely uncommon.

(Wen Wei Po) August 21, 2017.

In disqualifying Lai Siu-lai, the court issued an injunction against her acting as or claiming to be a Legislative Councilor. So when she showed up at the <Ten Years> showing as a Legislative Councilor, she is guilty of contempt of court.

When the HK Community Cinema presented "Legislative Councilor" Lau Siu-lai as their guest at the showing of <Ten Years> as the attraction in order to rake in donations, they may be guilty of fraud. And even if the donations took place outside of the Community Centre, this may still be in violation of the Summary Offences Ordinance.

Lau Siu-lai had also published her personal bank account information to collect unlawful donations. As such, Lau Siu-lai may be charged under CAP 615 Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing (Financial Institutions) Ordinance and CAP 155 Banking Ordinance for using her bank account for unlawful purposes. The bank should freeze her account and contact the police immediately for a thorough investigation or else they may be culpable themselves.

(Wen Wei Po) August 21, 2017.

Synopsis of unlawful solicitation activities:

Source of information: Facebook pages of the respective organizations

Teacher Siu-lai's classroom
August 13, Prince Edward/Lai Chi Kok: Lau Siu-lai, Leung Kwok-hung, Yiu Chung-yim
August 12, 17 locations: Lau Siu-lai, Joseph Zen
August 11, Central: Lau Siu-lai, Yiu Chung-yim, Leung Kwok-hung, Nathan Law
August 6, Causeway Bay: Lau Siu-lai, Tanya Chan
August 5, Hung Hom: Lau Siu-lai, Claudia Mo
August 4, Causeway Bay: Lau Siu-lai
August 3, Shatin: Lau Siu-lai, Eddie Chu Hoi Dick

League of Social Democrats
August 20, Wanchai: Leung Kwok-hung
August 19, Wanchai, Sham Shui Po: Leung Kwok-hung, Lau Ka-hung
August 18, Tseung Kwan O: Leung Kwok-hung
August 12, Mong Kok: Raphael Wong Ho-ming
August 11, Sha Tin, Tai Wai, Central: Leung Kwok-hung
August 6, Mong Kok, Tai Po: Leung Kwok-hung
August 5, Tuen Mun, Fan Ling: Leung Kwok-hung, Chan Chi-chuen

Hong Kong Demosisto
August 12, Causeway Bay: Derek Lam
August 11, Central: Nathan Law, Lau Siu-lai, Yiu Chung-yim, Leung Kwok-hung
August 6, Quarry Bay: Nathan Law
August 1, Heng Fa Chuen: Nathan Law

Internet comments:

- CAP 228 Summary Offences Ordinance Section 26A Punishment of person begging alms:

Article 4. Nuisances committed in public places, etc.

Any person who without lawful authority or excuse ---

(17) organizes, provides equipment for, or participates in any collection of money or sale or exchange for donations of badges, tokens or similar articles in a public place except under and in accordance with a permit issued

(i) for a collection, sale or exchange for charitable purposes, by the Director of Social Welfare; or

(ii) for a collection, sale or exchange for any other purpose, by the Secretary for Home Affairs;

shall be liable to a fine of $500 or to imprisonment for 3 months.

- Don't you understand the rules of the game? When Lau Siu-lai does it, it is for freedom and democracy and therefore it is all for the good. If you crack down on her activities, then you hate freedom and democracy, and Amnesty International/Human Rights Watch/United Nations Human Rights Council/Chris Patten/New York Times/The Wall Street Journal will come down on you. So why don't you take this story and just deep-six it? That would be better for your health (wink wink nudge nudge).

- Time for yet another New York Times editorial to nominate Lau Siu-lai for the Nobel Peace Prize?

- (HKG Pao) August 23, 2017. Previously, Lau Siu-lai promised to donate half her salary (which is more than $45,000 per month) to the poor and needy. Now that she no longer has the legislative council salary, she is asking people to donate $80,000 per month to her.

First, former Information Coordinator for the Office of the Chief Executive Fung Wai-kwong posted on his Facebook:

Three questions that Chan Kin-man does not dare to answer:
(1) Did your children or relatives take part in Occupy Central? Did anyone of them go to jail?
(2) Why isn't the Occupy Central financial report released even now? Did money come from foreign forces?
(3) Did you private used Occupy Central money?

This drew the following comment from Au Nok-hin, the Civil Human Rights Front convener and Democratic Party district councilor (Lei Tung constituency in Hong Kong Southern District):

Hey, Fung Wai Kwong, I am telling you: I fuck you.

(HKG Pao) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. August 19, 2017.

I woke up early on Saturday. With nothing else to do, I picked up my mobile phone and looked at Facebook: I saw former Information Coordinator for the Office of the Chief Executive Fung Wai-kwong posted three questions that he says Occupy Central trio member Chan Kin-man won't answer.

These are not just Mr. Fung's questions. Hong Kong citizens have been wondering the same for some years already. Just as I was going to hit the PRAISE button, I saw Democratic Party Hong Kong Southern District Lei Tung constituency district councilor Au Nok-hin commented: "Fung Wai Kwong, I am telling you: I XXXX you." That XXXX is an obscenity.

I was astonished. A Democratic Party district councilor who is a public servant receiving taxpayers money was publicly cursing out a citizen with foul language.

So I left a comment to tell everyone to publicize the sayings to the residents of Lei Tung district, so that they can see the quality of their elected representative. Immediately, Au Nok-hin linked up with Democratic Party Hong Kong Island Southern District Wah Fu North constituency district councilor Henry Chai Man-hon to curse us out and dig our old information in order to discredit Mr. Fung Wai-kwong and me.

Facebook fights are not worth mentioning, so why do I want to describe this episode in detail? That is because I want everybody to see what the opposition camp does. These are the tactics that they have been using all along. Over the years, people ask: Why do reasonable people not speak out? Why do normal voices have no channels for expression? The behavior of these two district councilors explain why.

When you pose a damaging question, the opposition will immediately pounce out like a tiger on a prey. They will not engage in a head-to-head debate. Their first step is to launch a tirade of invectives. Their second step is to enumerate your mistakes. Normal people won't fight with them, so you choose to shut up and retreat. This creates the impression that you were somehow at fault.

If even district councilors behave like this, you can imagine how the online henchmen can be.

Therefore, if you want to take back your speech rights, you must never back off. You must immediately point out the facts. When they counterattack, you do to them as they tried to do to you. Currently, the latest curse to be used is the term: The Stapler! Once you invoke The Stapler, they will look for holes in the ground to hide in.

As for the two district councilors who have time to provoke fights on Facebook but no time to inspect their communities, I will give you a good piece of advice: when citizens express their views on Facebook, they are exercising their freedom of speech. As district councilors, you are getting paid to serve the people. If you want to be enemies of the people, you should give up the job and its salary. We are your bosses.

Internet comments:

- More from Fung Wai Kwong's Facebook

Au Nok-hin: The most important thing about a person is to persevere. Wing-yin and Wai-kwong used to be pro-democracy. Today they have become supporters of the authorities. I can only say that it is heartbreakingly tragic.

Wat Wing-yin: I hope that you take a good look at the stapler on top of your desk. Who do you think lost their way now?

Wat Wing-yin: I did not change. Mr. Fung did not change. What has changed is China. The Chinese Communist Party has changed, but you are still clinging to the image from twenty years ago. This is not called perseverance. It is called being pig-headed (=stupidly obstinate).

Wat Wing-yin: I am just a regular citizen. I write a column to tell what people are thinking. This is called freedom of expression. But you people are district councilors with political power. So how can you be taking in taxpayer money while causing chaos?
Why don't you answer the question? Don't change the subject! The question was about the financial books.

(Screen capture of announcement from Occupy Central (Benny Tai, Chan Kin-man and Chu Yiu-ming): The first Occupy Central financial report shall cover the period from March last year to June 30 this year. It will be audited by an auditor. Date: March 9, 2014). As of today (August 19, 2017), no such financial report has been released.

Previous: Co-location: The Next Big Battle For Freedom/Democracy (2017/07/22)

(The Stand News) Co-location: A Substitute Proposal. By Johannes Chan. August 18, 2017.

This proposal deals separately with northbound (Hong Kong->Mainland China) and southbound (Mainland China-> Hong Kong passengers.


Co-location will take place in the West Kowloon Station

(1) At the West Kowloon Station, the passengers will go through Hong Kong immigration control to exit and proceed to a leased Mainland Port Area where they go through mainland Chinese immigration/customs/quarantine control.

(2) In all of the West Kowloon Station (including the Mainland Port Area), Hong Kong law holds.

Comment: Under the government's co-location proposal, Chinese laws hold in the Mainland Port Area. That is the main difference. The government argues that their approach would "would ensure clarity in implementation, avoid overlapping jurisdiction, and also the avoid of legal lacunas to perpetrate acts that are prejudicial to the interests of Hong Kong or the state."

(3) Mainland China personnel are allowed to conduct only immigration/customs/quarantine in the Mainland Port Area. They are not allowed to exercise any other power.

Comment: This means if a rowdy traveler complains about something or the other or even assaults mainland customs agents, the mainland Chinese personnel can only summon the Hong Kong Police and give them special permission to enter the mainland Chinese area for the specific purpose of dealing with this passenger.

Comment: The government says: "The greatest problem with this suggestion is that it is impossible to draw a clear distinction between those laws which are relevant to clearance procedures and those laws which would not be applied in the course of clearance procedures."

Comment: For example, the mainland Chinese customs agents want to confiscate a rhinoceros horn but the passenger contests the decision. What will the Hong Kong policemen do? If the rhinoceros horn is not banned under Hong Kong law, then the passenger has done nothing wrong.

(4) Those passengers who are refused entry into mainland China are handed back to Hong Kong law enforcement agents to follow up.

Comment: For example, mainland China prohibits people from bringing more than 20,000 RMB in cash into China. So if a person is found by mainland Chinese customs personnel to be carrying 500,000 RMB without explanation, that person and the cash can only be handed back to Hong Kong law enforcement agents. Since Hong Kong has no comparable currency restrictions, that person cannot be charged under Hong Kong law and will be released in Hong Kong. Since only a small fraction of travelers are randomly selected for inspection, a smuggling ring can send hundreds of mules knowing that most of them will get through and the few who are detected will be sent back to Hong Kong and freed along with their money.

Comment: For example, if fugitive Guo Wengui comes back with a fake passport and is detected by the mainland Chinese immigration officers, he can only be handed back to Hong Kong law enforcement agents. There is no extradition arrangement between Hong Kong and mainland China, so Guo will be released in Hong Kong.

Comment: The mainland Chinese law enforcement departments will simply adapt to the situation by not giving any immediate indication of awareness of any problem. They will radio ahead and public security bureau officers will be waiting at the first mainland Chinese stop.

(5) After passing through mainland China immigration/customs/quarantine, the passengers will still be in Hong Kong. The waiting hall is under Hong Kong law. The shops in the waiting hall are under Hong Kong law.

Comment: This means that the Falun Gong can buy a train ticket, go through Hong Kong exit control, enter the mainland Chinese area, stand in front of the mainland China checkpoint, set up a stall, hand out pamphlets to urge travelers to join the 60 million who have resigned from the Chinese Communist Party and denounce the evil Jiang Zemin. At the end of the day, they can just go back to Hong Kong side. This activity is legal and protected under Hong Kong law (see Mong Kok and Causeway Bay).

(6) If a passenger wants to change his travel plans after passing through mainland Chinese immigration/customs/quarantine control, he can go back to the Hong Kong side without having to go through any mainland China exit procedure.

Comment: This extra step is needed because there is no provision for mainland China exit procedure in West Kowloon under this hybrid proposal.


Co-location will be based in Futian Station, city of Shenzhen.

(1) Futian will be the last stop before leaving mainland territory. Mainland Chinese law enforcements agents can enforce mainland law without violating the Hong Kong Basic Law.

Comment: It is not possible to have Hong Kong law holding under co-location in West Kowloon Station for southbound trains. For example, a mainland Chinese fugitive arrives at West Kowloon Station. The mainland Chinese immigration officer immediately identifies him as a suspect in the Xinjiang knife attack. However, he cannot be arrested because this is an issue with the mainland Chinese criminal law code. When the Hong Kong Police are summoned, the fugitive immediately pleads for habeas corpus and political asylum on grounds of religious persecution. This would be a security hole to make Hong Kong a safe haven for fugitives, and that is why the last check has to take place inside mainland China.

(2) At Futian Station, all passengers disembark for exit clearance. After they do so here, they won't be required to do anything more in West Kowloon. The time taken will not be a lot.

Comment: See the next item for the time required.

(3) At Futian Station, the passengers go through mainland Chinese exit control first. Then they proceed to a leased Hong Kong Port Area to go through Hong Kong immigration/customs/quarantine entry control.

Comment: How much time will it take? Let us say that the Beijing->Hong Kong High Speed Rail train pulls into Futian. The long-haul train has 16 cars with 85 seats per car for a maximum of 1,360 passengers. The passengers file out with their luggage and march to the mainland Chinese exit checkpoint.

There are three types of passengers: mainland Chinese residents who use e-passages with facial recognition technology; Hong Kong residents who use e-passages with facial recognition technology; foreign passport holders who hand over their passports to be cleared by mainland immigration officers.

Those passengers will walk to the Hong Kong Port Area for immigration clearance. There are two types of passengers: Hong Kong residents will use their ID cards to go through e-passages with fingerprint recognition technology; other persons have to be cleared by Hong Kong immigration officers.

Those passengers will walk through the Hong Kong customs/quarantine area. A few of the passengers have something to declare and that will take time to sort out. Most passengers have nothing to declare but a few will be randomly selected for inspection, with some taking more time to sort out problems.

How long will it take? 5 minutes to clear everybody? That's impossible. 20 minutes? That's also a stretch. So let us say 60 minutes to make sure that every single passenger makes it.

Now the question is what happens to the train that you took from Beijing to Hong Kong. If the train has to sit at the Futian track and wait 60 minutes to pick up all passengers, it would be disastrous for operations because that track cannot be used by other trains. High Speed Rail trains arrive at 3 minutes intervals, so Futian Station will be clogged with waiting trains. That original  train is going to clear out as soon as all the passengers are off, and the train service is properly called the Beijing->Futian train.

Sixty minutes later, another empty long-haul train comes into the station to take the passengers of this train (and only this train) for a 14-minute ride to West Kowloon Station. This train will have the same number of seats as the original train, so that passengers can take the same reserved seats. This train service is properly called the Futian->West Kowloon shuttle.

Comment: This proposal means (1) passengers have to waste more time; (2) passengers have the inconvenience of taking their luggage off and on the train. Johannes Chan tells people to ignore the small inconveniences and look at the big picture.

What is that big picture? Something about not ceding Hong Kong land to mainland China to erode a High Degree of Autonomy/One Country Two Systems/Basic Law. And something about mainland personnel may brutally put down insurrections inside the Mainland Port Area, or torture passengers in inhumane ways, thus destroying the image of Hong Kong as an international financial centre and a rule-of-law society.

(4) When Futian Station becomes the Co-location point, there will be significant economic benefits to Futian.

Comment: Futian would only be a way station. How many travelers will want to stay overnight in Futian and dine/shop there instead of spending another 15 minutes to arrive in the heart of Kowloon? If there are many passengers who prefer this, then it is time for the Hong Kong Tourism Bureau to reflect on what has gone wrong.

At present, Futian Station does not have the facility to host co-location. Even if they start construction immediately, they won't be ready by 3Q 2018 when the Express Rail Link becomes operational in Hong Kong. So Johannes Chan has a stop-gap solution with On-board Clearance.

(1) When the High Speed Rail train arrives in Futian, mainland Chinese and Hong Kong immigration control personnel will board the train. The passengers will remain in their seats as the train continues to Hong Kong. The mainland Chinese personnel will conduct exit control and the Hong Kong personnel will conduct entry control.

(2) With sufficient manpower, on-board clearance will take only about 20 minutes.

Comment: The government said: "the journey time between the WKS and the first station in the Mainland (Futian Station) is only around 14 minutes, and that between the HKSAR/Shenzhen boundary and Futian Station would be even shorter, at about three minutes." Under the 20 minutes assumption, clearance won't be completed until after the train arrives at West Kowloon Station.

Comment: If not all passengers have been cleared when the train arrives at West Kowloon Station, then what? If you hold the train at the platform until all passengers are cleared, it will clog up operations at West Kowloon Station. If you move the passengers off into a restricted area to continue clearance, then this becomes Co-location. Why not just do Co-location then?

Comment: Once the train crosses the border, the security hole will appear. Fugitives detected by mainland Chinese immigration officers on the train can claim habeas corpus and ask for political asylum under Hong Kong law. So are they going to declare the train itself is mainland Chinese territory until the passengers disembark at West Kowloon Station?

Comment: The government says that "the current XRL trains acquired by the HKSARG through the MTRCL for short-haul service provide 579 seats each." How long will it take to process 579 passengers?

First we let the mainland immigration officers equipped with handheld devices walk though the train. There are three types of passengers:

(1) a mainland resident will hand over the Chinese ID; the ID will be scanned to check for validity and/or warrants; verification of the bearer by facial recognition technology;

(2) a Hong Kong resident hands over the Home Visit Permit; the permit will be scanned to check for validity and/or warrants; verification of the bearer by facial recognition technology;

(3) all others hand over their passports/travel documents; the passports will be scanned to check for validity and/or warrants; verification by photo comparison.

Next comes the Hong Kong immigration officers equipped with their own handheld devices. There are two types of passengers:

(1) a Hong Kong resident hands over the Hong Kong ID card; the card will be scanned to check for validity and/or warrants; verification by fingerprint technology;

(2) a mainland resident hand over the Chinese ID card and visa; the ID card and visa will be checked for validity and/or warrants;

(3) all others hand over their passports/travel documents; the passports will be scanned to check for validity and/or warrants; a photo will be taken.

[By the way, they don't have such handheld devices yet. This is assuming that they will build them within the time-frame. This is not so easy as these handheld devices must access centralized databases reliably and securely on the train.]

If an immigration officer takes 3 minutes to process one passenger, then it takes 579 x 3 = 1,737 minutes to process all passengers. In order to complete everything in 20 minutes, you need 1,737 / 20 = 87 immigration officers.

In summary, "sufficient manpower" means about 87 mainland Chinese immigration officers and 87 Hong Kong immigration officers on board the train. This is going to set a Guinness World Record.

[Note: The above calculation is based upon a short-haul train with 579 seats. The Beijing->Hong Kong train will be a long-haul train with 1,360 seats. In this case, the number of immigration officers will be at least doubled.]

(3) When the passengers arrive in West Kowloon Station, they will go through Hong Kong customs/quarantine clearance.

Comment: The government pointed out that customs clearance "may also involve checking of passengers' belongings when necessary. The limited space in train compartments would be be able to meet those operational needs, and there would also be constraints in terms of the manpower and facilities involved." So customs/quarantine clearance cannot be conducted on board the train.

Democratic Party Facebook

"Voicing support for the incarcerated resisters" assembly
Date: August 18, 2017
Time: 7:00pm - 10:00pm
Location: Outside Lai Chi Kok Reception Centre, 5 Butterfly Valley Road, Kowloon

"Political oppression is shameful; voicing support for the incarcerated resisters" demonstration march
Date: August 20, 2017
Time: 3:00pm
Assembly point: Southorn Playground, Luard Road, Wan Chai district, Hong Kong Island
Finish: Court of Final Appeal, Central district, Hong Kong Island

- What!? No mention of collecting donations to help those in prison to file appeals?

- What!? Diverting public attention away from the case of Lam Tsz-kin?

- If and when Lam Tsz-kin gets sent to prison for filing a false police report, will the Democratic Party regard him as an "incarcerated resister"?

- Voicing support? How much support? How about the Democratic Party legislators leading the masses to crash into the prison and rescue the prisoners?

- (Oriental Daily) August 18, 2017. A massive turnout of about 100 persons (including reporters) showed up outside the Lai Chi Kok Reception Centre to chant "Politically motivated judicial review is shameful." They called out the names of the North East New Territories 13 and the Civic Square 3 and demanded that they be released immediately. Then they sang Chinese/English versions of the Happy Birthday song for Alex Chow.

Chow Ting (Demosisto) said that the jailing of Joshua Wong and Nathan Law will not destroy Demosisto. Instead Demosisto will become stronger when the two get out of jail.

League of Social Democrats chairman Avery Ng said that his party will not vanish because "jailing one person means that ten more will join from the outside."

Federation of Students former deputy secretary-general Lester Shum said that he will take the three out for eat-all-you-can buffet when they get out. He said that those who are in jail will not abandon "civil disobedience: "If one gets arrested, more people will stand up and be counted."

- Eh, none of the Democratic Party bigwigs showed up -- Martin Lee, Albert Ho, Wu Chi-wai, Emily Lau, Helena Wong, Lam Cheuk-ting, Hui Chi-fung, Kwong Chun-yu. Maybe they were worried that if they appear in public, they will be asked about the Lam Tsz-kin affair.

- The Happy Birthday song in Chinese wishes you to have the same as today for every future birthday to come. That sounds very mean given the situation of the birthday boy. Are these Blue Ribbons?

- (Facebook video) At this rally, the League of Social Democrats declared that they have contacted social activists in 20 countries to surround Hong Kong businesses (HSBC, Cathay Pacific, etc) and Chinese embassies/consulates around the world for the next two weeks in order to force China to release the 16 political prisoners of conscience immediately. They also called to escalate tor a general labor/school strike on the third anniversary of the September 28 Occupy Central and thus re-boot the Umbrella Revolution.

- Why depend on international friends? Why not DIY? Let's march down to the China Liaison Office, surround it and not let anyone enter or leave until as such time when the 13 + 3 = 16 political prisoners are released! League of Social Democrats leaders Leung Kwok-hung and Avery Ng should lead the way!

- (TVB) August 20, 2017. Hong Kong Federation of Students former deputy secretary-general Lester Shum said: "After the Umbrella Movement and the Mong Kok incident last year, the entire Hong Kong democracy movement reached ebb tide. Many people shared a sense of helplessness. The ruling this time and the courage of our fellow warrior companions may not have been expected by Carrie Lam and Rimsky Yuen. It has been a shot in the arm for the many people who are feeling down about the Hong Kong democracy movement."

Gene Bond's Facebook

I visited Joshua Wong. Everything is fine with him so you won't have to worry (except for his crew cut which is very hard to get used to). He expects to get out of jail on December 17, 2017. He will also appeal to the Court of Final Appeal.

Joshua Wong asked me to forward these calls:

1. He hopes that no matter whether you are a pan-democrat, a self-determination faction member or a localist, you must attend the Sunday Peace/Reason/Non-Violence demonstration march (especially hoping that the localists would not stay away just because it is Peace/Reason/Non-Violence). He hopes that when he watches the news from prison on Monday, he will see that the demonstration march number reaches a post-Umbrella Revolution high.

2. He thanks the Department of Justice lawyer who exposed how shameless Rimsky Yuen is.

3. He hopes that the Hong Kong public will learn to understand the judges and rule-of-law again as a result of this ruling.

4. Hang on, Hong Kong Demosisto comrades!

5. Scholarism friends should not have to worry.

He will a reading the major newspapers and watching TVB news. He hopes to see in the daily news that people are working hard to develop democracy in Hong Kong. Go, everybody!

Hong Kong Demosisto Facebook: Demonstration start in support of the political prisoners

(SCMP) August 20, 2017.

A march held in the blazing afternoon heat on Sunday to oppose the recent jailing of Hong Kong political activists was the biggest protest since the 2014 Occupy movement, according to organisers. They said the turnout was higher than expected, but they were unable to come up with an estimate. Police put the figure at 22,000. They said the turnout was higher than expected, but they were unable to come up with an estimate. Police put the figure at 22,000.

Led by pro-democracy groups including the Civil Human Rights Front, League of Social Democrats and Demosisto, crowds marched from Southorn Playground in Wan Chai to the Court of Final Appeal in Central, where a rally was held.

Many brandished yellow umbrellas a symbol of the Occupy pro-democracy movement while others donned mock prisoners outfits and makeshift cages over their heads. They held placards branding the imprisonment of Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Nathan Law Kwun-chung and Alex Chow Yong-kang last week as acts of political persecution.

- (HKG Pao) August 20, 2017. No official estimate? Well, Apple Daily found Lai Chak Fun of D100 to tell them that the number was "in the tens of thousands." Not precise/big enough? Lai Chak Fun said that an anonymous source told him that the number was 140,000.

- (Oriental Daily) August 20, 2017. Volunteers for the organizers used a platform for media-politician communication to announce that about 50,000 persons marched. Later, they retracted that number and apologized.

- (Oriental Daily) August 20, 2017. Lester Shum said that the number of marchers far exceeded expectations, such that the organizers did not have enough people out there to do the counting. After the demonstrators arrived, Statue Square, Edinburgh Place Queens Road Central and Chater Road were filled with people. He said that the demonstrators took two hours before the end of the procession arrived. No matter what the number is, Shum said that this was undoubtedly the largest march since Occupy Central in 2014.

- (Oriental Daily) August 20, 2017. Going through the news reports, the biggest demonstration march after Occupy Central in 2014 was last year's July 1st demonstration march. The police said that more than 19,000 marched, while the Civil Human Rights Front claimed that more than 110,000 marched. Thus, Lester Shum is claiming a lower bound of 110,000.

- Just because Shum had no basis for making any claims won't stop him from making claims. The Big Wigs from the various organizer groups met and voted on a consensus number of 50,000 based upon political expediency. Unfortunately, this would not make it the highest number since the Umbrella Movement because they had previously cooked up too high a number in 110,000 for last year.  They can't really claim 110,000 today, because the distance from Southorn Playground (Wan Chai MTR station) to the Court of Final Appeal (Admiralty MTR station) is just one subway stop.

- A defense for the Civic Square 3/North East New Territories 13 is that other venues of effecting change (such as petition letters, petition signature campaigns, demonstrations, etc) have proven to be ineffective and therefore the defendants were forced to use Occupy tactics to force the government to meet with them.

The Umbrella Revolution has failed and these 16 people are sent off to prison after court trials. So what will they do? Will they escalate Occupy Central to two years instead of only 79 days? Will they call for a general labor/school strike so that nobody goes to work/school for 3 months? No, they haven't done so. Instead they have gone back to the good old demonstration march (note: on a shortened route from Southorn Playground to Central instead of Victoria Park to Central) which they said has proven to be ineffective. What gives?

- It is noted that Ray Wong and Edward Leung of Hong Kong Indigenous who started the Mong Kok riot on Lunar New Year's Day 2015 were also marching quietly today. There would be no rioting by them today. Have they abandoned "valiant resistance" for the good old "leftist retard" demonstration march?

- The point is not how many people marched, but how much money they forked over. This is a video of business at the League of Social Democrats post with Avery Ng telling people to open their wallets.

- (Ming Pao) August 21, 2017. The Support Group for the 16 Imprisoned Resisters announced that they raised over $2,515,690 during yesterday's demonstration march. They plan to establish a foundation whose bank account will be published later.

- (Oriental Daily) August 24, 2017. Today in court, 28-year-old kitchen worker So Tak-shing was sentenced to 4 months in jail on two counts of criminal destruction of property. He was caught on surveillance camera digging out pavement bricks from the sidewalk at the intersection of Sai Yeung Choi Street and Soy Street to be used to throw at the police during the Mong Kok Fishball Revolution.

- Not a cent from the $2,515,690 will go to assist that nobody So Tak-shing because he has negative propaganda value.

- (Silent Majority for HK) August 24, 2017. Prior to the demonstration march, a list of 117 'political prisoners' was circulated around for people to donate to help. After the demonstration march, the League of Social Democrats declared that only 16 persons will receive money. The other 101 have been cut loose.

- $2,515,609 / 117 = $21,502 per person.
  $2,515,609 / 16 = $157,231 per person.

The demonstration march/donation campaign was organized by League of Social Democrats and Demosisto. The list of 16 contains three League of Social Democrats members and 2 Demosisto members. The 101 contains many people from rivals such as Civic Passion, Valiant Frontier and Hong Kong Indigenous. Of course, LSD/Demosisto would keep the money for themselves.

- (Bastille Post) August 21, 2017. According to Hong Kong Demosisto's Derek Lam, this demonstration was organized by Demosisto, League of Social Democrats and other organizations, and they expected the crowd size will be smaller than the July 1st march organized by the Civil Human Rights Front. Someone with the organizer group told the media relations group that the number of marchers was 50,000. However, Lam said that they did not have enough people to count so they have retracted the 50,000 figure.

I must say that I can only admire how the organizers can manipulate the crowd size. In the past, the organizers often cite estimates that are 5 times or even 10 times that of the police estimates. When academic groups counted the crowds independently, their estimates are usually closer to the police estimates. So when I first read that the police estimated 22,000 and the organizers estimated 50,000, I thought that these organizers have not inflated their number by too much. But now they have retracted the 50,000 figure.

According to a person in the pro-establishment camp, the organizers retracted the 50,000 figure because it was too close to the police estimate. By retracting the number, it means that individuals can say whatever that want in future, be it 100,000 or 200,000.

If such is the quality of the Hong Kong opposition in disregarding reality, I cannot hold out any hopes for them on anything.

- Two weeks after the march, Stand News has revised history:

... Carrie Lam knows that she is in big trouble. Last Sunday, 100,000 people marched for those who were sent to prison for North East New Territories and Civic Square ...

- (Wen Wei Po) August 22, 2017.

Economic Times/Sky Post hosted an online poll. As of 10pm last night, 1,038 persons voted on: "Paul Hsieh said that the Civic Square 3 did what they did and should expect to pay for it. Therefore, they got what they deserved. Do you agree?" 89% agreed and 11% disagreed.

A previous poll was started on August 16. So far 2,238 have voted on "The Department of Justice won their judicial review on the case of the North East New Territories demonstration. The 13 defendants were re-sentenced to 8 to 13 months in prison. Are you satisfied with the ruling?" 83% agreed and 16% disagreed.

Internet comments:

- (ET Net) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. August 21, 2017.

Yesterday 22,000 persons came out to demonstrate on behalf of the 16 young people who were jailed for violent resistance. They said that the people of Hong Kong have come out and roared in rage ...

I want to clarify that there are 7,300,000 people in Hong Kong, and 22,000 is only 0.3%. Does 0.3% represent all of Hong Kong? Besides even your God has abandoned you ...

This God is named Joseph Zen. On this day, he wrote on Facebook: "I really want to be by your side." This means that he is not here, and that is because he has to travel.

"In May/June, I went to Europe for 40 days ... I want to visit Chinese catholic organizations in Canada and the United States while I am still able to ... But a series of heartbreaking events have unfolded in my beloved Hong Kong. I wondered if I should cancel the trip and return to the side of the brothers and sisters who are being persecuted by the evil regime. Putting aside my chagrin and sorrow, I nevertheless boarded the airplane ...

"When I got to San Francisco, I learned that the Civic Square 3 were re-sentenced to begin prison immediately ... this heavy sentence showed that the judiciary has become the tool for political oppression. The judge even became a Chinese-language teacher by saying that 'taking' Civic Square implies violence ... Our Bible has disciple Paul saying 'Christ has taken me!' Somebody should send Jesus Christ to the court!"

"I heard that the decision to seek a judicial review was personally made by the Secretary for Justice. If he has an order from 'above', then he is a slave who has enslaved the judges; if he does not have an order from 'above', then he is psychologically perverted ..."

"I am an old man ... I am not only not in legal trouble, but I am overseas. I am ashamed. I am a believer. During this vacation, I will say more prayers ..."

You go to jail and he prays for you. Dear resisters, this is your Big Brother. When the going is good, he comes out and shares the glory; when the going is bad, he dodges.

People like Martin Lee and Jimmy Lai come out to take the front seats when the police came for clearance. But once the judges start to mete out prison sentences, they are quieter than mice. Do you remember what Civic Party's Alvin Yeung said a few days ago: "Their criminal records make their lives more colorful! These young people are searching something in a very pure way. They did certain things that I don't dare to do." The emphasis is on "things that I don't dare to do."

Alvin Yeung is a barrister. What is he most afraid to do? Break the law! If he is convicted, he will be disbarred. So he doesn't dare to break the law, and he has to count on you to do it? Even in triad society, the Big Brothers usually the way with plenty of body scars and criminal convictions to show. But these Pro-Democracy Big Brothers have fancy dresses and happy families. They grab the glory and leave the prison time to their faithful followers. They are not triads; they are worse than triads.

After the Big Brothers have fled, the blind followers continue to follow blind. On this day, a parent brought a teenager to march. He said that they are marching in order to guard the future of the child. The odd fact is that when do you see politicians bring their own children to demonstrations? They only do to others what they won't do to themselves. Why are you still following such Big Brothers?

- Where is the Chief Executive Carrie Lam throughout all this? This photo was posted on her Facebook.

A commentator asked whether she is going to be as unresponsive as her predecessor CY Leung. The standard answer is that she had confidence in the judiciary to act independent in accordance with the law.

If now you demand that the Civic Square 3 and the North East New Territories 13 be released immediately, then her compliance will be the biggest possible blow to rule-of-law, on the same scale as a pardon for the Seven Evil Policemen. Be careful about what you wish for.

- (HKG Pao) August 22, 2017.

22,000 persons marched to support the imprisoned social activists. The opposition is happily announcing that they are back after the preceding assembly drew only 100 participants.

But please note that his was a group of peaceful demonstrators who did not yell insulting slogans aloud. Even a policeman at the scene said that he was not used to not being called "Evil Police." After the demonstration, they did not march to the China Liaison Office in Sai Wan, nor did they stay behind in Central to cause trouble. The court cases carried the important lesson that violence and rioting can result in jail sentences of six months and up. The people have woke up. Nobody is willing to lead the way and incite others, and nobody is going to follow.

- (2014 Hong Kong Wake Up) Facebook

Have you fucking lost your memories? Read this again carefully.

On November 12, 2014, Joshua Wong clearly states that the process of civil disobedience must be completed by the arrest in order to fulfill the moral and legal responsibilities. If you fuckheads have so much sympathy for him, you should have stayed after the demonstration march yesterday. You can charge onto the roadway to conduct your "civil disobedience." And then the police can arrest you so that you can be in prison together ... You fuckheads are hypocrites.

When you wore the halo on your head, you preach "civil disobedience" and "fearlessness." When you get sentenced to more than community service time, you scream "political oppression." The pan-democratic leftist retards who marched yesterday are fucking worse than the Blue Ribbon commies.

- (Line Post) September 3, 2017.

Many organizations including the League of Social Democrats, Neighbourhood and Worker's Service Centre, Demosisto, Socialist Action and some legislative councilors totaling more than 80 persons marched from the Court of Final Appeal to the office of the Secretary for Justice in support of the 16 imprisoned social activist and former student leaders. These people questioned whether Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen had political motives in selectively prosecuting these people. They demand the government to withdraw all charges against all protestors. They demand the resignations of Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen and Chief Executive Carrie Lam Yuet-ngor.

- From 22,000 down to 80? It can't be because of typhoon Mawar which had reached land far away in eastern Guangdong province already.

- (RTHK) September 3, 2017. According to Socialist Action chairperson Tang Mei-ching, 200 marched today. This was more than what they expected. She said that court verdicts will be rendered against more Umbrella Movement participants this month and therefore resistance must continue. She plans another demonstration on September 28.

- Why is the RTHK reporter taking dictation of the organizer's claim of 200? How hard was it to count up to 80?

Previous: #476: The Taking Of Civic Square 123 (2016/03/03)

(SCMP) August 9, 2017.

Prosecutors have asked an appeal court to jail student activists convicted of storming government headquarters two days before the start of the pro-democracy Occupy protests in 2014, saying the original lenient sentencing sent the wrong message.

It is the second time prosecutors have asked courts to jail Joshua Wong Chi-fung, secretary general of political party Demosisto, Nathan Law Kwun-chung, a disqualifed legislator of the same party, and former student union chief Alex Chow Yong-kang, who were convicted last year.

Wong and Chow were found guilty of one count of illegal assembly. Wong was sentenced to community service and Chow received a suspended three-week jail term. Law, who was recently stripped of his seat on the Legislative Council for insincerely taking his oath last year, was convicted of inciting others to assemble illegally and also given community service.

The appeal could have implications for future cases as prosecutors called for a deterrent sentence for cases of illegal assembly involving violence.

Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions David Leung Cheuk-yin attacked the decision by then Eastern Court magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngan to adopt a more understanding approach to sentencing young protesters. This is rather dangerous, Leung said, arguing that it sent the wrong message to young people.

Leung said there was no way the trio did not foresee that their storming would lead to clashes with police and security guards when they and other protesters entered the east wing forecourt of the government headquarters. He added that 10 security guards were injured. Urging the Court of Appeal to jail the three, he said the offence was serious because it was well planned.

But barrister Edwin Choy Wai-bond, for Chow, described the students as 20-odd-year-old kiddos yelling slogans. Choy urged the judges not to impose a deterrent sentence, saying the same effect could be achieved if they specifically warned people not to flout laws. He said the seriousness of the illegal assembly offence had already been reflected in the legislation, which stipulates a jail term of up to five years.

Court of Appeal vice-president Mr Justice Wally Yeung Chun-kuen and Justices of Appeal Derek Pang Wai-cheong and Jeremy Poon Shiu-chor will hand down their judgment on August 17.

(Oriental Daily) August 9, 2017.

According to Senior Counsel Randy Shek, the ingredients in an unlawful gathering is "disruption of order; threatening, insulting or provocative action." As such this covers a wide spectrum of behaviors, including jumping a queue, standing in the middle of the road, cursing with foul language, etc. In this particular instance, the defendants did not resort to violence.

Judge Poon said that while the defendants did not use violence, should they be held responsible if they misjudged whether others will use violence? Shek said that it is possible that the defendants made honest misjudgments.

Judge Poon said that the defendants knew that the police have rejected their application to enter Civic Square and that there were security guards and police stationed there. So can they really think that there would be no violence if they enter by force?

Shek said that Joshua Wong did not object to the description of his actions at the trial. Wong has also apologized to the security guards who were injured, and expressed his willingness to accept the court's judgment and sentence. This proves that he is remorseful.

But Judge Yeung and Judge Pang wondered if Wong is remorseful when he says that he did not think that his actions were wrong. Judge Poon said that the three defendants are student leaders, and their actions will lead other young people to form wrong ideas about the risks involved in being involved in physical clashes, getting arrested and being punished. So should the court increase their sentences?

Shek said that this case was a lot milder than the political clashes that took place later. Although the three defendants are student leaders, most of the other arrestees are adult university students or adult non-students, so the court can treat them as persons capable of having independent thinking and making their own decisions. Nathan Law had told the demonstrators about the legal risks that night too.

(Sing Tao) August 9, 2017.

With respect to pre-meditated violence, Counsel Randy Shek for Joshua Wong said that there could be some physical contact, but the defendants did not anticipate any violence. Judge Poon said that when the three met to discuss the re-taking of Civic Square, they said that they would not assault people, but that doesn't mean that when they wouldn't use force to push ahead. Poon wondered why Shek wanted to assess the possibility of violence from the viewpoint of the three defendants rather than that of ordinary people. Shek said that the worst case scenario would be for the demonstrators to charge ahead and encounter resistance. However, they did not plan any violent assault and they did not anticipate that anyone would get injured. Jude Poon asked: "How so?" Shek said that it is possible that they misjudged.

Shek said that even though the community service order did not say that the defendant was sorry for what he did, but his behavior during the trial (including his apology to the injured persons) showed that he is sorry. But Judge Yeung said that they were not sorry about their crimes. "If they don't think that they did anything wrong, then how can they be sorry?" This was like not being sorry about robbing a bank, but apologizing for taking the money. Yeung said that he has never seen such kinds of 'sincere' apologies.

Barrister Edwin Choy Wai-bond on behalf of Alex Chow agreed that disturbing social peace is a serious crime. However, there are different degrees of severity. Although more than 100 persons charged into Civic Square, it only went on for ten minutes or so. The degree of violence or force was much less than the precedent cases presented by the prosecutor.

Choy said that the demonstrators were mostly people in their 20's wanting to hold a dialogue with the government but they failed. Judge Poon asked: "Charging into Civic Square will get you a dialogue?" Choy said: "It is possible that they thought so." He said that they may have made the decision without understanding the plan, but they have received punishment already. In particular, Alex Chow's suspended sentence will reach its end next week.

Choy said that Alex Chow is 20-something-years old and has a lot of ideals about the student movement. If Chow is spared and allowed to obtain a doctorate, his legal viewpoints may be very different. However, Chow had not graduated at the time of the incident. Judge Poon said that everybody has to obey the law, "and even non-university graduates know that." Choy said that as the prosecutor said, the most likely people to be injured in their action are themselves. Judge Poon asked if just because they acted dangerously for themselves means that they should be treated leniently?

(Oriental Daily) August 17, 2017.

At some time after 1030pm last night, Joshua Wong's lawyer Randy Shek faxed a letter to the court to for consideration. Shek asked the court for a postponement to receive instruction. Judge Yeung said that the letter should be handled in open court. The court went into recess for 10 minutes.

When the court resumed, Shek said that he no longer wishes the court to consider the letter so as to delay the ruling. Judge Yeung was disappointed and called the defense irresponsible for asking the court to consider the letter last night and now saying otherwise. He said that postponement or not should not be the decisive factor. If the issue was important, it should be brought out in open court in order to give the Department of Justice a chance to respond. The court should not have been informed in a private letter.

The court went into recess again for Shek to take instructions from his client. Wong said that he wants to withdraw the letter. Yeung said that this was improper and also vexing to the court. But now that Wong has withdrawn the letter, the court will not disclose the contents of that letter. The court then decided to issued its ruling at 4pm.

(SCMP) August 17, 2017.

The first three student leaders convicted over the storming of government buildings which triggered the pro-democracy Occupy protests in Hong Kong three years ago were jailed for up to eight months on Thursday, as the government won its bid for stronger punishments.

Those prison terms replaced the community service orders initially meted out to Demosisto leaders Joshua Wong Chi-fung and Nathan Law Kwun-chung, as well as the suspended three-week jail sentence for former student union chief Alex Chow Yong-kang.

Wong was sentenced to six months, Law to eight and Chow to seven.

Speaking at court before he heard the ruling, and clearly expecting to go to jail, Wong said he wanted to see a hopeful Hong Kong when I am out [of prison] next year, while Law declared he had no regrets about his activism.

Internet comments:

- Hours before the Hong Kong Court of Appeal issued its ruling, Labour Party chairman Lee Cheuk-yan posted on his Facebook:

The Chinese Council of the United States of America issued a statement that it would be a political force to stifle freedom of speech, and that the United States should examine the special relationship of Hong Kong under United States law. .

References: Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act; The US Congressional Hearing on Hong Kong

- (Hong Kong Free Press) August 17, 2017.

Representative Smith said the sentences were another severe blow to Hong Kongs reputation as a city governed by the rule of law. Beijing is actively trying to decimate the pro-democracy movement using Hong Kongs courts and prosecutors to further its political agenda. How can one fully trust a legal system that nullifies legitimate Legislative Council elections and resentences Umbrella Movement leaders who have already served their terms? The Hong Kong government may say these are deterrent sentences, but to the rest of the world it looks like political prosecutions intended to curtail freedom of expression. The United States must show unwavering support for freedom and the rule of law, but if the Chinese government will no longer abide by the promises made in the Sino-British Joint Declaration, U.S. policy must adapt and reassess whether Hong Kong warrants special status under U.S. law.

- The statement was written before the Hong Kong judges announced their ruling. The court document contains 64 pages of legal reasoning. But Senator Rubio and Representative Smith don't feel that they need to read the ruling, because they already know the truth.

- The "resentencing of these young people" was made by a Court of Appeal panel of three judges. Is "Beijing's heavy hand on display for all to see"? What is that you can see but nobody else can?

But let us supposed that the Hong Kong judiciary has been infiltrated by Chinese Communist stooges? Should these three judges be impeached immediately and replaced by pro-democracy ones selected by the United States Consulate General? And what about all the other judges?

- Here are the relevant provisions of the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act:

--- "Require the President to identify persons responsible for the surveillance, abduction, detention, or forced confessions of certain booksellers and journalists in Hong Kong, and other actions suppressing basic freedoms, and to freeze their U.S.-based assets and deny them entry into the U.S."

So who is going to be identified, have their US-based assets freezed and denied entry into the U.S.? Ex-chief executive CY Leung when the invasion of Civic Square took place? Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen who asked for a tougher sentence? Current Chief Executive Carrie Lam who is not responsible for either the appeal or the outcome? The three Justices of the Court of Appeal?

--- "Make clear that visa applicants who resided in Hong Kong in 2014 shall not be denied visas on the basis of the applicant's arrest, detention or other adverse government action taken as a result of their participation in the nonviolent protest activities related to Hong Kong's electoral process."

The invasion of Civic Square ended with 10 security guards sustaining injuries. Was it violent then? Yes. And did it have anything to do with the electoral process? No.

- Just because 10 security guards were injured does not imply any violence. The perpetrators never intended violence. The security guards would not have been injured if they had not stood in the way of the non-violent freedom fighters. By their actions in the line of duty, they begged for physical violence and got what they deserved. Long live freedom! Long live democracy!

- (Hong Kong Free Press) US politicians warn Hong Kongs special status may be axed amid political prosecution of democracy figures.

- So in order to save Hong Kong's economy, HKSAR Chief Executive Carrie Lam must immediately order Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow be released immediately? I can't even count the number of principles cherished by the pan-democrats would be broken --

A high degree of autonomy? Check.
One Country Two Systems? Check.
Separation of powers? Check.
Rule of law? Check.
The Joint Sino-British Declaration? Check ...
Self-determination? Check ...
Hong Kong independence? Check ...

- Marco Rubio was elected to the US Senate in 2016 by 4,835,191 registered voters in the state of Florida. That is why Hong Kong must obey his wishes.

- Dear Senator Rubio, if you have too much time on hand, I would suggest that you work with your President to deal with Cville first.

- The comparable thing is for three Occupy Wall Street leaders to lead a group of protestors to scale the White House wall and take over the front lawn. They are arrested. Do you think that they should receive a presidential pardon?

- (New York Times) A Nobel Prize for Hong Kongs Democrats. August 17, 2017.

Heres a suggestion for the Nobel Peace Prize Committee, which opens its nominating season next month: Look to the three young men who earlier today became Hong Kongs first prisoners of conscience.

In 2014, the courageous trio helped lead what become known as the Umbrella Movement an enormous political protest defending Hong Kongs freedoms from an increasingly aggressive Beijing. Like Andrei Sakharov, Vaclav Havel, Aung San Suu Kyi and so many dissidents that came before them, the men were hit with a bogus charge (unlawful assembly), were found guilty and served out their punishments last year.

But today, Hong Kongs Department of Justice decided that those penalties were too lenient.

Joshua Wong, who burst onto the citys political scene at 14 years old and is the public face of its democracy movement, was sentenced to six months. Nathan Law and Alex Chow were sentenced to seven and eight months, respectively. All three had budding political careers, but these new sentences bar them from running for public office for the next five years.

As Mr. Wong put it to a reporter from The New York Times before his sentencing: The government wanted to stop us from running in elections and directly suppress our movement. He added: Theres no longer rule of law in Hong Kong. Its rule by law. Just so.

The implications of their imprisonment are monumental. Since Britain handed over jurisdiction of its former colony to China 20 years ago, the city has operated under the notion of one country, two systems. That increasingly appears to be an empty slogan. The outcome isnt just a travesty for these three peaceful pro-democracy activists or free speech its also a painfully clear sign that Beijings political dictates are eating away at Hong Kongs judiciary, an institution essential to the territorys autonomy, Sophie Richardson, the China director of Human Rights Watch, told me.

Derek Lam, Mr. Wongs best friend and a key activist in the movement, put it even more bluntly in a call from Hong Kong: The court of Hong Kong is a slave of the Chinese government. He added: The judge doesnt acknowledge that democracy, freedom and human rights are the reasons Joshua is doing this. He just kept insisting that they were inciting violence.

Mr. Lam, who aspires to become a pastor, could soon be accused of the same: Next month he faces sentencing for his role in a 2016 protest.

I am heartbroken. All my friends went to jail today. I might join them next month, he told me. But we will never regret what we have done. What we are doing is correct. It is the truth. And we will persist. That relentless spirit was echoed by Mr. Law, Mr. Chow and Mr. Wong today. As Mr. Wong, just 20 years old, put it on Twitter before he was jailed: You can lock up our bodies, but not our minds! We want democracy in Hong Kong. And we will not give up.

The battle these young people are waging is far bigger than their futures or even than Hong Kong itself. They are among some of the most prominent leaders pushing an authoritarian China to honor its international and political commitments. Can a handful of Davids hold a Goliath to account? The imprimatur of a Nobel Prize would help.

- At first, I thought that I must be reading some kind of parody. I had to verify the link before accepting that this is the New York Times.

- Let me make an alternate nomination to the Nobel Peace Prize Committee -- I nominate Lam Tsz-kin who represents all the millions of victims of tyrannical regimes around the world. Awarding the Prize to Lam would be just as bizarre as to Wong/Law/Chow.

- Awarding the Prize to Wong/Law/Chow would make the 10 injured security guards very happy, because they will know that their pains and sufferings were not in vain. Peace, brothers! You have gained glory for Hong Kong!

- (SCMP) From the NYT: All the jokes that are fit to print. By Alex Lo. August 21, 2017.

Its official. Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Alex Chow Yong-kang and Nathan Law Kwun-chung are bona fide prisoners of conscience. If The New York Times says so, it must be true: not once, but twice, in three days.

The first time, it was more tentative: Will Hong Kong jail its first political prisoners?, asked its editorial board (August 15). Now, its confirmed. Opinion section staff editor Bari Weiss has declared the courageous trio to be Hong Kongs first prisoners of conscience (August 17). For having to serve six to eight months in jail, Weiss has compared the three to Andrei Sakharov, Vaclav Havel and Aung San Suu Kyi. Boy, those giants of 20th century politics fought Soviet totalitarianism and the Myanmar junta. Joshua, Alex and Nathan stared down the Hong Kong government. Its like, yeah!

I would like to point out to Weiss that the sentences were imposed by the Court of Appeal, not the Department of Justice. Maybe she is being prophetic of things to come, but at the moment, we still have an independent court.

As the Bar Association and the Law Society have pointed out, the three student leaders were given due process and proper legal representation under British common law. But who cares about such details?

Weiss goes even further, arguing the three young men should be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. I am all for it. There is no such thing as bad publicity. The city has never had a peace prize winner before, though Charles Kao Kuen and Daniel Tsui Chee did win two prizes in physics. But the peace prize is better because everyone can have an opinion about it, as it has had some dodgy choices in recent years. Those physics prizes who understands them anyway?

But why stop there? Those three didnt do it by themselves. The whole Yellow Umbrella movement deserves the big prize. And now that we are into hyperbole, I think Leung Chun-ying, our former chief executive, and Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, our current one and chief secretary before that, should be put on trial for crimes against humanity at The Hague for suppressing the movement that lasted 79 days and then petered out.

I used to read The New York Times for news and analysis. Now I can read it for satire, too. Its even better than The Onion website: All the jokes that are fit to print.

- (Reuters) August 17, 2017.

Britain said it was vital Hong Kong's young people had a voice in politics and it hoped the sentencing would not discourage legitimate protest in future.

"The UK remains a staunch supporter of the right to peaceful protest and we believe it is vital that Hong Kong's young people have a voice in politics. Hong Kong's way of life is underpinned by its rule of law," a spokeswoman for Britain's Foreign Office said in a statement.

- It is useless for the UK to say anything. It is even more useless when the UK is saying useless things.

- On one hand, the person is your mother; on the other hand, the other person is your father. So whose side are you on? You refuse to say. You only mouth: "On one hand, blah blah blah; on the other hand, la-di-da."

- I like Annie Hall, so I'm always for la-di-da.

- Here is the perfect example of an unequivocal statement: (Hong Kong Free Press) Taiwans top policymaking body on China, the Mainland Affairs Council, expressed its deep regret over their imprisonment. The council reiterates the governments long-standing stance to support Hong Kong people to pursue democracy, freedom, the rule of law and human rights, it said in a statement. It added the verdict had prompted concerns in Hong Kong and the international community over what some see as a politicised judiciary that would damage the citys judicial independence and affect its investment environment.

- What the hell is "deep regret"? Does it mean that the Taiwan government will cut off all political and economic ties with Hong Kong and fire cruise missiles at the IFC/ICC? No. If you can't put your money where your mouth is, then it's just bullshit.

- (Reuters) August 18, 2017.

Chris Patten, the last governor of former British colony Hong Kong, has criticized the jailing of three leaders of the Chinese-ruled city's pro-democracy movement saying the men should be a source of pride.

Joshua Wong, Nathan Law, Alex Chow and other Umbrella Movement protesters were sentenced to six to eight months in prison on Thursday for unlawful assembly, a blow to the youth-led push for universal suffrage.

"I think they will be remembered, and their names will be remembered, long after nobody can remember who I was, and perhaps nobody can remember who President Xi Jinping was," Patten told an audience at the Edinburgh Book Festival, according to its official bulletin.

"We should be proud of what those kids are doing."

- (Department of Justice) August 17, 2017.

The above-named three defendants in this case were convicted not because they exercised their civil liberties, but because their conduct during the protest contravened the law. The HKSAR courts have all along handled cases (including public order event cases) independently, justly and professionally. The court found the three defendants guilty on the basis of evidence presented during a fair trial as well as the applicable law.


DoJ notices that certain people in the community allege that the prosecution in this case was politically motived, or that this case is a case of political persecution. Such kind of allegations are utterly groundless, and choose to ignore the existence of objective evidence. In all criminal cases (including this one), DoJ deals with them in accordance with the Prosecution Code, the applicable law and relevant evidence. Further, the state of judicial independence in the HKSAR cannot be doubted. It can be seen from the reasoning contained in the Judgment that the Court of Appeal dealt with this case solely from the legal perspective, and that there cannot be any suggestion of political motivation whatsoever.

- (SCMP) Translated excerpts from the Hong Kong Court of Appeal's ruling. August 19, 2017.

What happened?

On September 26, 2014, respondents from different groups attended a rally in the area in front of the government headquarters, next to Tim Mei Avenue. They were given a notice of no objection from police before the rally, and the notice was valid until 10 oclock that night.

On the same day, the two gates of the fence of the area in front of the Central Government Offices were closed for security reasons. When the incident happened, security guards were on duty in front of and behind the gates. There were also [metal] barriers in front of the gates.

The rally finished at about 10.20pm. When the participants began to leave, Wong ran onto the podium and used the radio system to call on them to stay and get into the area in front of the Central Government Office. Then Wong passed his role as the host of the rally to Law, while he himself ran to the area in front of the Central Government Offices.

Law took over the position of Wong and stood on the podium while calling on the people to enter the area. Hundreds of rally participants climbed over the fence and forced open the closed gates, against the efforts of security guards and police officers.

Finally, dozens of rally participants managed to enter the area. Some of them pushed down the barriers placed under the flagpoles there, where subsequently the people, including Chow, joined hands and shouted slogans. It lasted about 12 minutes from when the first respondents called on the people to enter the area to when they surrounded the flagpoles.

During the incident, a total of 10 security guards at the Central Government Offices got injured while they were preventing the rally participants from entering the area. Most of them suffered from slight injuries, such as tenderness, bruises and swelling. Security officer Chan Kei-lun was more seriously injured. He suffered from bruises and swelling on his left foot toe and a slight fracture near his first phalanx. He took sick leave for a total of 39 days.

Trial magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngans reasoning for her sentence in August 2016

 The respondents are all leaders of student democracy movements in Hong Kong, who come from both grass-roots and well-off families. They have had good academic performance, and do not have any criminal records. They are enthusiastic about social issues, and committed to politics. Their families understood and supported what they were doing.

 The trial magistrate thought the case was different from ordinary criminal cases, and that the purpose behind their committing the offence should be taken into account apart from the seriousness of the case. She was satisfied that the respondents took their actions because of their political beliefs and in light of the social conditions, and not for their own interests, nor for their attempts to hurt others. She pointed out that young people were pure and innocent, did not take into account actual interests, or might be impulsive. Therefore, when sentencing, the magistrate took a more tolerant and understanding attitude to the respondents motives.

 The trial magistrate also said the case occurred earlier than the more radical political events such as the Occupy protests. She also considered that if the subsequent political environment was taken into account, deterrent penalties would become unfair to the respondents. On top of that, she considered their behaviour in the case much more moderate than in subsequent political events.

 The trial magistrate was of the opinion that the respondents actions were not very violent. She said they had merely entered Civic Square, which they believed was a meaningful and representative place and where they formed a circle and shouted slogans.

 Although the respondents were convicted after trial, they showed cooperation during the arrest, investigation and trial. They expressed respect for the court: they did not deny their participation in the incident or the acts they had done. They only questioned whether their acts had constituted offences. They also told the probation officer that they were willing to take legal consequences and to accept the penalties in the form of community service orders.

What is a community service order and when is it applicable?

A community service order is a common form of sentence passed by lower courts upon conviction for unlawful assembly.

 The court may issue an order to a person aged 14 or above who is found guilty of an offence punishable by imprisonment, to carry out unpaid work in accordance with the provisions of this ordinance during the validity period of the order. The number of hours of work is specified in the order, but can not exceed 240 hours.

 A community service order has the elements of penalty and rehabilitation. A community service order is also a remedy for the perpetrator to contribute to society through unpaid work, so that members of the public can benefit from them for damage they have caused.

 Some believe that a person receiving a community service order should meet the following conditions: it is the first offence by him or her; the crime was minor; he or she comes from a family with a stable background; he or she has a good occupational record; and he or she shows sincere remorse. At last, he or she has a low possibility of committing the crime again.

Errors made in the initial sentencing, according to the Court of Appeal

 The trial magistrate did not consider that the sentence should have a deterrent element, while giving disproportionate weight to factors such as personal circumstances and the respondents motives.

 The trial magistrate did not think the case involved serious acts of violence. However, she ignored the fact that the rally was a large-scale unlawful assembly, where the risk of violent conflicts was high.

 Given the prevailing and objective circumstance, the respondents should have reasonably expected the people involved in the incident would clash with security guards and police officers, and that injuries would then be inevitable. However, the trial magistrate completely ignored this point.

 The trial magistrate overlooked that, before the incident happened that night, the Hong Kong Federation of Students and Scholarism had finished the rally on the road next to the government offices, and the area in front of the government offices was closed. They had no absolute right to enter the area to hold the rally, but they insisted on illegally entering it by force. They also encouraged or incited others to illegally enter it by force. They thought they were correct in doing so and their acts were in breach of the law.

 The trial magistrate gave disproportionate weight to remorse as a factor in sentencing. In fact, the respondents ... still insisted that they were correct in entering the area by force. It was because they always thought they were simply exercising their freedoms of speech and of assembly. The first respondent even said in his community service order report that he had no remorse at all for what he did. The third respondent also made a similar statement in his community service order report.

Even if the respondents did not deny the acts they had done, and expressed respect for the court and were willing to bear the legal consequences of the conviction after the trial, their remorse was superficial. The proportion of weighting given by the court to the factors should not be too high.

In summary, the magistrate made a principle error by granting a community service order for the respondents, which was clearly too light. Therefore the Court of Appeal needs to intervene.

New sentencing guidelines for cases involving violent unlawful assemblies

 In accordance with the general principle for sentencing, the court shall take a full account of the actual situations about the case and the seriousness of the circumstances of the crime, and then give a proportion of weighting to each applicable sentencing element, before the perpetrators are given a sentence commensurate with the crime. The same principle applies to cases involving violent unlawful assemblies.

Under the premise of maintaining public order, and in light of the seriousness of the unlawful assembly, the court, while sentencing, needs to consider the deterrent element. The proportion of the element shall depend on the circumstances of the case.

 If the case is relatively minor, for example, if an unlawful assembly is unpremeditated and small in scale, involves slight violence, and did not cause any personal injury or property damage, then the court shall update sentencing elements and increase the proportion of weighting to the individual circumstances of the perpetrators and the motives or reasons for committing the crime, while the deterrent element would proportionately be reduced in sentencing.

 If the case is serious, for example, it is a large unlawful assembly involving violence or serious violence, the court shall give a large proportion of weighting in sentencing to the two elements of punishment and deterrence, while the proportion of weighting for factors such as the personal circumstances, the perpetrators motives or reasons of committing the crime would be given a small proportion of weighting or would not be given any weighting under extreme circumstances.

- (CAAR 4/2016  Complete English version of Court of Appeal judgment)

- Hong Kong Demosisto, Statement regarding imprisonment of umbrella students leaders.

After the judgment on the North East New Territories New Development Area protest, today (17th August), the Court of Appeal handed down a judgment to put democratic movement leaders Nathan Law, Joshua Wong and Alex Chow behind the bars after reviewing the civic square case. They are sentenced 6-8months' imprisonment.

Demosisto is of the opinion that the students had exhausted every possible means within the establishment before resorting to civil disobedience as an attempt to engage in a dialogue with the government. It is a shame that the government responded to the demands for democracy with indifference and arrogance. Today, the Department of Justices comparison of the Umbrella Movement with a riot is an immense humiliation to all the participants in the Movement.

Nathan Law and Joshua Wong had completed their community service order duly, and have been serving Hong Kong citizens along with their political ideals genuinely in the Council and community. The Department of Justice had made an application for sentencing review in the first place, yet they conducted the hearing in a "re-trial" manner, raising disagreement on questions of facts. All these showed that the government is determined to put peaceful protestors behind bars to mute all dissidents by abusing judicial procedures.

Since Xi Jinpings rise to power, the Hong Kong governments ever-growing restrictions on civil and political rights put many young dissidents behind the bars. Demosisto, fighting at the frontier of social movements, already had three members being imprisoned. For the sake of Hong Kongs democracy, they can chain us but they can never imprison our determination.

Demosisto humbly invites Hong Kong citizens, especially those who wish to escape from politics, to rally their courage in face of the challenges ahead. We will keep calm and carry on with our principle of non-violence, standing hand in hand with Hong Kong people in the fight for democracy and freedom.

17 August 2017

- Joshua Wong got 6 months, Alex Chow got 7 months and Nathan Law got 8 months. 678. It would have been sweeter revenge for CY Leung if Wong got 6, Chow got 8 and Law got 9. 689.

- If all three got 7 months apiece, Carrie Lam would be snickering aside. 777.

- 678. 6 + 7 + 8 = 21. Black Jack!

- According to the rules of Three Card Baccarat, this is the second smallest possible hand.

- (SCMP) August 18, 2017.

The Hong Kong Court of Appeal which sent three young Occupy leaders to jail warned against what one judge called the unhealthy trend of advocating civil disobedience, while observers feared the ruling would intimidate people into staying away from future pro-democracy drives.

While the citys democracy activists pledged to maintain their campaigns even if allies were jailed, a criminal lawyer said the lower courts, which used to value young defendants ideals, would have to follow the Court of Appeals deterrence principle in handing down future sentences.

The ruling which sees Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Alex Chow Yong-kang and Nathan Law Kwun-chung sent to jail for six to eight months was the governments second successful attempt in a week to seek tougher sentences for protesting activists.

Court of Appeal vice-president Wally Yeung Chun-kuen slammed the unhealthy trend in which intellectuals advocated the idea of civil disobedience.

These people openly despise the rule of law. Not only do they refuse to admit their law-breaking behaviour is wrong, they even see their acts as something to be proud of, Yeung wrote.

This arrogant and self-righteous thinking will unfortunately affect some of our young people and result in attempts to disrupt public order ... during rallies, marches and protests.

Criminal lawyer Stephen Hung Wan-shun said the ruling handed down by the Court of Appeal would have far-reaching implications for similar cases in future.

In the past, the principle was that jail terms should be the final resort for young defendants, especially those under 21 years of age ... but now the Court of Appeals guideline is that they should be jailed, he said.

Hung dismissed concerns that peoples freedoms had been narrowed by the ruling, but he believed there would be no room for any use of violence at future rallies.

Chinese University political scientist Dr Ma Ngok said the two rulings would inevitably exert pressure on Hongkongers and prompt them to think twice before joining protests.

Behaviour which they thought would only lead to community service might now end them up behind bars, he said.

- (SCMP) August 18, 2017. Lester Shum, one of the Occupy student leaders, said they had decided to participate in civil disobedience after exhausting various means to achieve universal suffrage in Hong Kong, and it was neither a rash decision nor a result of brainwashing.

- Exhausting the means to achieve universal suffrage in Hong Kong?

- Legislative Council filibustering? Didn't work.
- Demonstration march? Didn't work.
- Petition signature drive? Didn't work.
- Petition China Liaison Office? Didn't work.
- Petition Central Government? Didn't work.
- Hunger strike? Didn't work.
- International pressure? Didn't work.
- General labor/business strike? Didn't work.
- General school strike? Didn't work.
- Taxpayers refusing to pay taxes? Didn't work.

What is the record so far on civil disobedience insofar as achieving anything on universal suffrage?

- Occupy? Didn't work.
- Assaulting the Legislative Council? Didn't work.
- Assaulting Government Headquarters? Didn't work.
- Mong Kok riot? Didn't work.

If civil disobedience doesn't work either, why keep doing it? Why will the next round yield a different outcome? Why not look for a different means with lower costs for the participants?

- There are plenty of Don't Drop The Soap prison jokes. A yellow banner is obligatory:

- Alex Chow and Nathan Law were sent to the Lai Chi Kok Correctional Institution while Joshua Wong was sent to the Pik Up Correctional Institution for juvenile prisoners. Wong can look forward to an exciting six months ahead.

(Hong Kong Free Press) June 13, 2017.

On Tuesday, Ming Pao published interviews with three former prisoners who claimed that they were forced to undergo up to seven hours of physical training every day, including three hours of squatting, which left them with knee injuries months after release.

Prisoners would sometimes be denied the opportunity to relieve themselves in the bathroom. One said he witnessed another being forced to lick his own urine off from the floor after he could not stop urinating.

As a practice, prisoners must place their bowls on top of their heads to prove that they have finished their meals. However, all three interviewees said they were sometimes asked to finish boiling porridge within one minute or even 10 seconds some suffered burns to their heads as a result of turning filled bowls upside down.

- What happens next? The standard suite of actions consists of (1) a rally of 500 persons (reported as 80,000) in support of the Civic Square Three; (2) a fund-raising campaign to raise even more money to file an appeal at the Court of Final Appeal. Meanwhile the three will not be able to run in any District Council or Legislative Council elections for the next five years.

- Headline Daily, August 18, 2017.

According to Hong Kong University School of Law Senior Lecturer Eric Cheung Tat-ming, past experience showed that the security guards at Government Headquarters can only advise the demonstrators not to enter Civic Square but they won't physically stop them. Therefore one cannot assume that Wong-Law-Chow could have anticipated that these security guards will actually try to stop them. In addition, Cheung said that while Wong-Law-Chow indeed climbed the wall and entered Civic Square, one cannot prove that the actions of the others are connected to them. Therefore he believes that the Court of Appeal was making new assessments of the facts (which is not the role of the Court of Appeal).

Cheung said that he agrees with the Court of Appeal that civil disobedience requires the participants to bear legal responsibility and that there is nothing wrong with the court issuing a ruling in accordance with the law. In the present case, violence occurred and there should be legal responsibility. But he said that Wong-Law-Chow said not to use violence beforehand and the reason why they climbed the wall was precisely to avoid clashing at the gate. Therefore he does not think that Wong-Law-Chow were involved in any violence.

Hong Kong Federation of Students former deputy secretary-general Lester Shum said that the defendants in both the North East New Territories case and the Civic Square case intend to appeal. The lawyers are studying the rulings at this time.

- The Court of Final Appeal will hear any new legal arguments. They will not hear listen to a haggle about the lengths of jail sentences.

- (RTHK) Hong Kong University School of Law associate professor Benny Tai said on radio that the Court of Appeal did not consider the motives of the three defendants. He said that a certain British judge had stated clearly that the motives of the participants in a civil disobedience case must be considered in the ruling. The present ruling did not give any indication of such.

- Leonard Hoffman in R vs Jones (2006) wrote: "Civil disobedience on conscientious grounds has a long and honourable history in this country. People who break the law to affirm their belief in the injustice of a law or government action are sometimes vindicated by history." So far so good.

But Benny Tai does not want to tell you what Leonard Hoffman added: "But there are conventions which are generally accepted by the law-breakers on one side and the law-enforcers on the other. The protesters behave with a sense of proportion and do not cause excessive damage or inconvenience. And they vouch the sincerity of their beliefs by accepting the penalties imposed by the law. The police and prosecutors, on the other hand, behave with restraint and the magistrates impose sentences which take the conscientious motives of the protesters into account. The conditional discharges ordered by the magistrates in the cases which came before them exemplifies their sensitivity to these conventions."

Civil disobedience is not unconditionally permissible. The protestors have to behave with a sense of proportion and do not cause excessive damage or inconvenience. Does 10 injured security guards match the common sense of proportion? Was it excessive damage? Did occupying Central for 79 days cause inconvenience?

- The initial ruling by magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngan found that the motives of the defendants were noble and therefore community service was imposed. This led to a public outcry which forced the Department of Justice to appeal the sentences.

Why was the public so upset? Because they don't see any consensus on the objective standards on the nobility of motives, and they don't want a system of rule-of-man over rule-of-law wherein the law is applied differently on the basis of the perceived nobility of motives. The most often cited example is the ISIS suicide bomber, who thinks that he is doing it for the most noble of purposes. If the bomb fails to detonate and he is arrested, what will you do about him?

- If you accept this argument, then will you accept an even better argument here?

(SCMP) June 9, 2017.

Hong Kong courts have no jurisdiction to try a retired policeman accused of striking a bystander with a baton during the 2014 Occupy protests, according to defence lawyers citing an argument raised for the first time in 131 years.

The defence emerged at former superintendent Frankly Chus pretrial review on Friday. His case is set for November, three years after the incident during the pro-democracy sit-in.

Chus counsel Peter Pannu said provisions in the Public Order Ordinance stipulated that any person who uses force necessary for any purpose in accordance with the ordinance shall not be liable in criminal proceedings even if such use of force kills a person.

Pannu, a former police officer who went on to become a barrister, argued such wordings suggested the courts had no jurisdiction to try his client.

He cited another clause stating that no person acting in good faith under the ordinances provision shall be held liable for any acts in the exercise of his duty, or for public safety, or the defence of Hong Kong.

This means the defendant is not liable to be found guilty ... as long as the defendant is acting in good faith, Pannu told magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngan at the West Kowloon Court.

Yes, it is the same magistrate June Cheung Tin-ngan.

- If magistrate Cheung sentences Franklin Chu to 80 hours of community service and the Secretary for Justice appeals to the Court of Appeals, what would the Yellow Ribbons say?

- Here is the list of the heroes/heroines/martyrs of the Umbrella/Fishball Revolutions so far this year. They have either been sent off to jail or awaiting trial.

1. 葉寶琳(反新界東北,入獄2星期)
2. 張漢賢(反新界東北,入獄1星期)
3. 黃根源(反新界東北,入獄3星期)
4. 梁曉暘(反新界東北,入獄13個月)
5. 黃浩銘(反新界東北,入獄13個月;雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中;928公眾妨擾案,審訊中)
6. 劉國樑(反新界東北,入獄13個月)
7. 梁穎禮(反新界東北,入獄13個月)
8. 林朗彥(反新界東北,入獄13個月;反釋法遊行案,審訊中)
9. 朱偉聰(反新界東北,入獄13個月)
10. 何潔泓(反新界東北,入獄13個月)
11. 周豁然(反新界東北,入獄13個月)
12. 嚴敏華(反新界東北,入獄13個月)
13. 招顯聰(反新界東北,入獄13個月)
14. 郭耀昌(反新界東北,入獄13個月)
15. 陳白山(反新界東北,入獄13個月)
16. 黃之鋒(926公民廣場案,入獄6個月;雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
17. 周永康(926公民廣場案,入獄7個月)
18. 羅冠聰(926公民廣場案,入獄8個月)
19. 戴耀廷(928公眾妨擾案,審訊中)
20. 陳健民(928公眾妨擾案,審訊中)
21. 朱耀明(928公眾妨擾案,審訊中)
22. 陳淑莊(928公眾妨擾案,審訊中)
23. 邵家臻(928公眾妨擾案,審訊中)
24. 張秀賢(928公眾妨擾案,審訊中)
25. 鍾耀華(928公眾妨擾案,審訊中)
26. 李永達(928公眾妨擾案,審訊中)
27. 曾健超(襲警及拒捕,入獄5星期)
28. 鄭錦滿(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,入獄3個月)
29. 歐煜鈞(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,入獄1個月,緩刑1年)
30. 岑敖暉(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
31. 司徒子朗(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
32. 朱緯圇(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
33. 周蘊瑩(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
34. 蔡達誠(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
35. 張啟康(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
36. 馬寶鈞(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
37. 黃麗蘊(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
38. 楊浩華(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
39. 張啟昕(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
40. 陳寶瑩(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
41. 朱佩欣(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
42. 郭陽煜(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
43. 趙志深(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
44. 麥盈湘(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
45. 關兆宏(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
46. 馮啟禧(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
47. 熊卓倫(雨傘旺角清場刑事藐視法庭案,審訊中)
48. 陳耀成(蠔涌炸彈案,審訊中)
49. 鄭偉成(蠔涌炸彈案,審訊中)
50. 彭艾烈(蠔涌炸彈案,審訊中)
51. 胡啟賦(蠔涌炸彈案,審訊中)
52. 文廷洛(蠔涌炸彈案,審訊中)
53. 楊逸朗(立會火燒垃圾桶案,監禁2年)
54. 葉卓賢(立會火燒垃圾桶案,被判入勞教中心)
55. 馮敬恩(圍堵港大校委會案,已被定罪,9月判刑)
56. 李峰琦(圍堵港大校委會案,已被定罪,9月判刑)
57. 許嘉琪(旺角初一衝突,監禁3年)
58. 麥子晞(旺角初一衝突,監禁3年)
59. 薛達榮(旺角初一衝突,監禁3年)
60. 莫嘉濤(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
61. 李倩怡(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
62. 鍾志華(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
63. 何錦森(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
64. 霍廷昊(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
65. 陳和祥(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
66. 鄧敬宗(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
67. 李卓軒(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
68. 林永旺(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
69. 葉梓豐(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
70. 吳挺愷(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
71. 楊子軒(旺角初一衝突,被判入教導所)
72. 羅浩彥(旺角初一衝突,監禁3年)
73. 連潤發(旺角初一衝突,監禁3年)
74. 黃台仰(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
75. 梁天琦(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
76. 容偉業(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
77. 李諾文(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
78. 盧建民(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
79. 袁智駒(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
80. 林傲軒(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
81. 黃家駒(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
82. 李東昇(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
83. 林倫慶(旺角初一衝突,審訊中)
84. 吳文遠(披露受廉署調查人士身分案,審訊中;三文治擲梁振英案,審訊中;反釋法遊行案,審訊中)
85. 梁國雄(公職人員失當案,無罪釋放;藐視立法會案,審訊中;星島日報辯論比賽案,監禁7日)
86. 鄭松泰(倒轉國旗案,審訊中)
87. 林淳軒(反釋法遊行案,審訊中)
88. 周嘉發(反釋法遊行案,審訊中)
89. 葉志衍(反釋法遊行案,審訊中)
90. 陳文威(反釋法遊行案,審訊中)
91. 盧德昌(反釋法遊行案,審訊中)
92. 鄭沛倫(反釋法遊行案,審訊中)
93. 周樹榮(反釋法遊行案,審訊中)
94. 梁頌恆(立會非法集結案,審訊中)
95. 游蕙禎(立會非法集結案,審訊中)
96. 鍾雪瑩(立會非法集結案,審訊中)
97. 楊禮康(立會非法集結案,審訊中)
98. 張子龍(立會非法集結案,審訊中)

With so many pro-democracy Occupy activists in jail and many more soon to join them, Benny Tai has now announced:

"Occupy Prison has officially commenced!"

- There will be a mini-Hong Kong inside the prisons:

Chief Executive (Donald Tsang),
Chief Secretary (Rafael Hui),
legislative councilors (Leung Kwok-hung, Nathan Law),
lawyers (Martin Lee, Albert Ho, Alvin Yeung, Tanya Chan),
law professor (Benny Tai),
university students (Alex Chow, Joshua Wong),
feng shui master (Chan Chi-chung),
real estate tycoons (the Kwok brothers of SHK),
media tycoon (Jimmy Lai),
police officers (the Seven Evil Cops),
ex-pat neurotic unfaithful murderer wife (Nancy Kissel),
rioters (Yeung Ka-lun),
beach lifesaver (Kwok Siu-kit),
social worker (Ken Tsang),
Catholic archbishop (Joseph Zen),
pastor (Chu Yiu-ming),
singer (Denise Ho),
actor (Gregory Wong),
IT network administrator (Chan Pak-shan),
interior decorator (Ray Wong),
waiter (Billy Chiu), etc.

Every conceivable service will be available.

- (HKG Pao) Civic Party chief Alvin Yeung Ngok-kiu has this piece of sage advice for the North East New Territories 13 and the Civic Square 3: "Your criminal records make your lives more colorful." This drew the immediate question: "Will the Honorable Alvin Yeung please make your own life more colorful?"

- (Ming Pao) Editorial: On the rulings handed down to young activists.

13 protesters opposing the develop-ment plan of North East New Territories had originally been sentenced to community service for assaulting the Legco building. The Department of Justice, arguing that the punishment was too lenient, filed for sentences review. The Court of Appeal overturned the original sentence and sent the protesters to eight to thirteen months' immediate imprisonment.

Many activists and politicians, who are unhappy with the ruling, have repeatedly talked about things like "political persecution", "judicial violence" and "white terror". However, it is the behaviour of those who seek political publicity in complete disregard of legal viewpoints and making absurd accusations of "the judiciary being politicised" that is politicising the judiciary. The DOJ argued that at the time when the incident happened, more than one hundred people gathered illegally and they attacked the Legco building. They prised open the gate with bamboo and metallic objects, and destroyed the stone wall of the Legco building. In an instant, the incident escalated to a critical point of riot.

According to a legal precedent set in the UK in 1970, it is not easy to distinguish between unlawful assembly and violent assembly. The threat of using violence is not much better than the actual use of violence. Given the gravity of the case, any punishment other than immediate imprisonment would not be appropriate.

That good people have broken the law and been sent to prison is unfortunate. But that does not mean that they should escape punishment. If they think that the punishment handed down by the Court of Appeal is too harsh, they should appeal the ruling. Other people should not try to politicise it. It is those who politicise everything, employ double standards, take delight in seeing rulings that are compatible with their political stances and rail against the so-called political persecution by the "dependent judiciary" and the "cooperation of the three powers" who are insulting judicial independence.

The protesters and their supporters said that they had stood on the side of the disadvantaged not because they wanted to cause injuries. "Why should we end up this way just because we wanted to stop the violence of the establishment?" they asked. These young people are passionate about ideas and theories. But this could make them become bigoted and think that they understand the truth and justice. They could even be misled by dubious arguments and become trapped by the myth that "I am justice".

Take the so-called "violence of the establishment" as an example. Any place with social organisations, a power structure or a machinery of government has its own suppression and yoke of the establishment. But we do not see "tit for tat" as the only way to counter the violence of the establishment. To challenge the powerful and vested interests does not mean that one has to resort to sabotage. Early this year, when the 13 protesters appealed the ruling, the High Court already pointed out that the appellants' glib assertions that "a tyranny is coming into existence" and that "people have the right to rise against tyranny" could easily become an excuse for violence and as such were unacceptable.

The danger of the "I am justice" myth is that they believe that they are equivalent to justice and that justice will not prevail unless they prevail. This could easily result in they acting recklessly and trying to achieve the "big things" by employing any means. History books tell us that social activism mostly ends in failure. It takes generations and generations of hard work to advance social progress. The "I am justice" ideology, the belief that "no battle can be lost" and the unscrupulous use of violence actually impede the promulgation of their beliefs. Protests need to be conducted in good ways. One can test the boundaries, but they should not overstep the boundaries rashly. Nathan law, who is from Demosistō, says that the protesters in the case were forced to employ means that "the public might find repugnant" in order to fight for justice. This shows exactly what is wrong with the tactics of the protesters.

- Apple Daily

The New York Times editorial said that it will be a watershed in Hong Kong history should the three student leaders be the first group of political prisoners ...

- These three guys are the first group of political prisoners? Yeung Ka-lun was sentenced to 4 years 9 months in prison earlier this year. They refuse to mention a single word about him. History is written with certain designated heroes who fit the main theme and all other miscellaneous characters are cast into the trash bin.

- Yeung Ka-lun is definitely disposable because he is a nobody with zero propaganda value. More ambiguous will be the cases of Edward Leung and Ray Wong for participation in and incitement of rioting, because they have received considerable western media coverage already. Where will Senator Rubio, the UK Foreign Office and the New York Times stand?

- (Oriental Daily) August 18, 2017. A few days ago, the North East New Territories 13 had their sentences increased from community service to 13 months in prison. Yesterday, the Civic Square 3 were sentenced to an average of 7 months. Although these are about different subjects (North East New Territories urban development versus public access to Civic Square), their common nature is that they involved violent clashes and disruption of social order, and their common defense is that the principals were acting because they care about Hong Kong.

In terms of social influence, Joshua Wong (as former leader of Scholarism and current secretary-general of Demosisto), Nathan Law (as former Federation of Students vice-president and former Legislative Councilor) and Alex Chow (as former Federation of Students secretary-general) were far more important than the North East New Territories 13. But the 3 were sentenced to 6 to 8 months in prison versus the average 13 months for the 13.

And when the 3 were due to be sentenced, along come American senators and the New York Times to sing praises and issue threats. By contrast, the foreigners don't give a rat's ass about the 13. Could this be what is in Animal Farm: "All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others?"

- In Cantonese, the expression for exploiting a situation for personal gain is called "drawing water." For example, a cactus is chopped down and you siphon off the water. It is expected that politicians should exploit the case of Civic Square 3 to advance their own political interests. But, as with the case of Lam Tsz-kin, inappropriate handling can lead to blowbacks. In Cantonese, the expression becomes "drawing firewater (=kerosene)". So you try to siphon water but you drew kerosene instead, setting yourself on fire. Here is Yau Wai-Ching (HKG Pao):

<At a time when darkness hovers over our heads, we must be even firmer>: The existing judicial system is sending every single Hongkonger interested in improving our society to prison. They use every means possible to ruthlessly silence us. We are heartbroken to see the North East New Territories 13 and the Civic Square 3 going to prison, because we know that they have always wanted to give their best to Hong Kong and instead they have been so cruelly treated ... At a time when our companions and martyrs are being sent to prison one after another, we have nowhere to retreat to. I sincerely ask everyone not to abandon the martyrs nor every Hongkonger who is still trying hard to fight on."

- "Why don't you also get into street protests yourself?  You can start a riot! You can lead the way to charge into the People's Liberation Army barracks! You can lead the warriors to storm the prison and free the political prisoners of conscience! Do you expect to be an opposition member without shedding a drop of blood?"

- "The only thing that you are good at is telling other people to charge and die!"

- "You better give the money back to the Legislative Council! The money belongs to Us the People!"

- "Wait! You forgot to post your paypal account information so that people can donate more money for you to continue your valiant resistance!"

- Joint Statement of The Hong Kong Bar Association and The Law Society of Hong Kong in Response to Criticisms of Judicial Independence in Hong Kong

1. The Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society of Hong Kong note with great concern editorial comments and other opinions reported in some international and local media in respect of the Hong Kong Court of Appeals recent decisions in relation to applications for reviews of sentences in cases of unlawful assembly.

2. It is not the practice of the Hong Kong Bar Association or the Law Society of Hong Kong to comment on the merits of individual cases, which may be the subject of appeal, nor is it appropriate to do so.

3. We would, however, point out that the decisions by the Hong Kong Courts are made solely according to law upon applications by one party or the other. We see no indication otherwise in respect of the recent cases which have generated widespread comment. Whatever opinion one may hold about the appropriateness or otherwise of the sentences imposed, the individuals concerned were convicted and sentenced for crimes committed after having been accorded due process through the courts with proper access to legal representation.

4. Open and rational debate on the issues raised in individual cases is to be encouraged in a civil society.

5. However, unfounded comments that judicial decisions were made or influenced by political considerations originating outside Hong Kong are unjustified and damaging to our legal system, and to Hong Kong as a whole.

6. We repeat what the Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society of Hong Kong said on previous occasions:

one must be careful and cautious when commenting on a court judgment and has to take into account the impact of such comment on the integrity and independence of the Judiciary. The bedrock to the rule of law in Hong Kong is the trust and confidence of the public and the international community towards our judges and the judicial system. Any inappropriate comment could fuel baseless and unnecessary suspicion on judicial independence, and may undermine the confidence of the public and the international community in the rule of law in Hong Kong....

We are fully confident that all judges in Hong Kong are capable of and will continue to abide by their judicial oath to uphold the Basic Law, bear allegiance to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the Peoples Republic of China, serve the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region conscientiously, dutifully, in full accordance with the law, honestly and with integrity, safeguard the law and administer justice without fear or favour, self-interest or deceit. We will do our utmost to safeguard judicial independence in Hong Kong.(extracted from a statement issued by the Hong Kong Bar Association in February 2016 in response to statements that our courts passed unduly lenient sentences in public order cases)

The Rule of Law, as well as an independence and professional Judiciary, are widely respected by the Hong Kong community. These are also regarded highly by the international community to be the cornerstone for economic success of Hong Kong. This high level of respect and the confidence in the Hong Kong judicial system are instilled through long judicial history, hard earned tradition and constitutional entrenchment, as well as the continual efforts of the distinguished and professional judges. This should not and can never be undermined or compromised or be dragged into the political arena.(extracted from a statement issued by the Law Society of Hong Kong in September 2015)

The sentiments expressed in the above comments then apply equally now.

- The Hong Kong Bar Association and Law Society of Hong Kong were forced to issue their joint statement because of western editorial such as: (The Wall Street Journal) Hong Kongs Political Prisoners China forces local judges to send democratic activists to jail. August 17, 2017.

Chinas crackdown on Hong Kongs opposition escalated Thursday as a court jailed student pro-democracy leaders. By imprisoning the three popular figures, the government is blocking them from running in the next legislative by-elections and it marks another step in the slow but relentless strangulation of Hong Kongs freedoms.

Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow received sentences of six to eight months for leading hundreds of thousands of protesters who occupied the citys downtown for 75 days in late 2014. Hong Kongers were angry that Beijing reneged on its promise to allow the city to elect its chief executive by universal suffrage. Instead of allowing an open system of nominations, Chinese authorities wanted to pick a lineup of candidates based on their loyalty to the central government.

For their role in the civil disobedience, the student leaders were sentenced last year to community service and a suspended jail term by a lower court. They completed their punishments and the case seemed to be closed. But then this year the government appealed to the High Court for tougher sentences, including jail time.

This is part of a wider effort to marginalize the opposition after Septembers legislative election. Beijing was alarmed that opposition candidates, including some who called for greater autonomy for the city, won 58% of the popular vote and secured 30 of the 70 seats. The opposition had the votes and the mandate to filibuster legislation and pressure the government for more democracy.

In May, Chinas third-ranking Politburo Member, Zhang Dejiang, said in a speech that Beijing was determined to consolidate its control over Hong Kong. First the National Peoples Congress reinterpreted the citys constitution, the Basic Law, to disqualify six opposition legislators, with eight more at risk of losing their seats.

With the opposition now lacking the votes to filibuster, pro-Beijing lawmakers changed the legislatures rules to prevent future blocking of new laws. One Chinese official hailed these decisions as the rainbow after the storm.

Mr. Zhang also reiterated Beijings stand that the judiciary is subordinate to the executive branch and judges should learn the Basic Law. Other officials criticized Hong Kongs use of foreign judges, who are supposedly too sympathetic to separatist elements.

Chinese officials have stepped up pressure for the city to pass antisubversion laws that would make advocating greater autonomy a crime. That would make it easier to suppress opposition politicians and their supporters.

Hong Kong now has its first political prisoners, and if Beijing has its way they will be followed by many more. That will force the citys residents into a stark choice of whether to continue fighting for the rights China promised when it guaranteed 50 years of Hong Kong autonomy or accept that the former British colonys special status is fading into history.

- Nothing could have undermine confidence in rule-of-law in Hong Kong more than The Wall Street Journal editorial.

- (Ming Pao) Editorial. August 21, 2017.

Three years ago, Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow, the trio from Scholarism and the Hong Kong Federation of Students, illegally forced their way into the area in front of the East wing of the government headquarters (commonly known as the "Civic Square"). The Court of Appeal ruled that the original sentences handed down by the Court of First Instance were too lenient and sentenced them to six to eight months in prison instead.

26 September 2014 is an important day in Hong Kong history. That night, Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow took the lead and climbed over the fence to force an entry into the "Civic Square" and called on citizens to participate. This signaled the beginning of the Occupy movement. They were charged with unlawful assembly and inciting others to participate in unlawful assembly. They were convicted. They were either sentenced to community service or given a suspended sentence, escaping custodial punishment. The Department of Justice (DOJ), arguing that sentences were too lenient, filed for sentences review. The Court of Appeal sentenced the trio to prison. Some commentators argue that the DOJ was perpetrating "political persecution" or "political suppression" in an attempt to stop them from running for the Legislative Council. However, if we study the background of the case and the judgements, we will see that such accusations are not fair.

Several years ago, "civil disobedience" was often talked about and was the synonym of "aspiration" to some people. However, it does not follow that those who engage in "civil disobedience" and pursue their ideals can break the law at will. When handling illegal behaviour associated with "civil disobedience", the courts need a set of reasonable standards.

Shouldering the legal responsibility is at the core of civil obedience. In that sense, a conviction should be exactly what people who engage in civil disobedience want, and as such should not be regarded as political persecution. The crux of the matter is the severity of the sentences. The judge of the Court of First Instance argued that the trio were not motivated by self-interest, and that their actions were not very violent. The judge also argued that we should be "tolerant" towards young people who were not afraid of expressing their views for the sake of their political ideals. But the DOJ argued that such an argument was very dangerous. The DOJ argued that on that day there were nearly a hundred people who forced their way into the government headquarters for an unlawful assembly, and things were so dangerous that it was almost a "riot" and there was a lot of violence. As the trio's actions were premeditated, they should be put behind bars. The DOJ thus filed for sentences review and demanded that the court set a guideline for sentencing for illegal activities that derived from demonstrations and gatherings later on. The DOJ's viewpoint is not unfounded or unnecessary. It is very reasonable and legitimate to demand a sentencing guideline.

The Court of Appeal mentioned that the trio were being irresponsible when they called on young students to join the protests, as they knew perfectly well that the huge group of people who were forcing their way into the square were locked up in a fight with the security guards and that could result in deaths or injuries. The trio were also deluding themselves and others by saying that they would not use violence to occupy the "Civic Square". The trio or their supporters can appeal the rulings if they are unhappy with them. But we do not see that the rulings are groundless.

Alex Chow maintained that "we are on the side of the truth" when he faced imprisonment. This fully displayed his mindset of "I am justice". The rulings are a wake-up call to all people. Young people are eager for justice. But they should not act rashly. They should persist in their fight for democracy and justice. But they should review their radical means and not forget about the rule of law.

- (  ) August 20, 2017.

Hong Kong Bar Association former chairman Paul W.T. Hsieh was interviewed by Cable TV. Hsieh thought that the Court of Appeal ruling was normal: "The main point in the ruling was that you are entitled to exercise whatever rights you have, but once you step beyond the line known as violence, you are no longer under the protective shield of lenient penalties. This is not unique to Hong Kong, and it did not begin with this particular ruling. This is not called being turned 'red' or changing the rules in the middle of the game."

"When you say that you are fearless, then what don't you fear? You don't fear being prosecuted! So when you did what you did, you expect to pay somehow. You are getting what you asked for. So why do you characterize the prosecution as political motivated and the penalty as political persecution? Why do you want to drag the innocent courts into the water with you? I advise these resisters to face reality squarely and fulfill the promises that they made previously. In this way,  they may get respect from a lot of people."

In Wally Yeung's ruling, he mentioned certain knowledgeable persons. Hsieh feels the same way, and he named Benny Tai as having to bear a great deal of responsibility. "In 2015, I said that many people including Benny Tai were making creative interpretations of civil disobedience. Judge Yeung did not name names, but I will name Benny Tai as having a lot to answer for ... the script was that on October 1, everybody will lie down with their hands covering their chests to let the police remove them one by one. Peaceful disobedience will gain an aura. This was just a scholar's unrealistic wishful thinking. As a resister, he has lost the objectivity to be able to analyze civil disobedience. He will be lost at sea."

As for foreign media criticizing rule-or-law in Hong Kong, Hsieh thought that this was laughable. "What business is this to the New York Times? They didn't like the ruling, so they called it political persecution. What is the difference between this and the People's Daily/Global Times condemning the foreign-born judge for imposing heavy jail sentences on the seven police officers?"

- (HK01) August 20, 2017.

... Paul Hsieh said that Benny Tai should bear great responsibility for civil disobedience. Benny Tai said that not all the responsibility should be attributed to the resisters alone. He said that in this episode, all Hong Kong people must bear responsibility. "If Senior Counsel Paul Hsieh were with us back then, I think that our voices would be louder. Should he bear some responsibility too?"

Benny Tai's super-twisted argument ...

He said that all the people of Hong Kong have to bear responsibility for this civil disobedience!
Responsibility for what?
I did not do anything. I never approved of any of their actions or sayings, but I am held responsible?
Does he think that Hong Kong citizens are stupid?
Is he shameless or what?

Also, Demosisto's Chow Ting is telling people to debate in detail those around them to explain why young people are going to jail! I don't care what their ideas are -- these people are going to jail because they broke the law. Do not change the focus and blame everything on "politics."

- (HKG Pao) August 23, 2017.

Yesterday Paul Hsieh and Alan Leong (Civic Party) were on television. Paul Hsieh said that while Alan Leong went into politics after his term as Bar Association chairman, he himself did not join any political party and will never enter politics. "Because as soon as you join, you are forced to say things that go in the same direction forever." Leong paused and eventually replied: "Not really."

Leong then cited others to say that the government was biased because they did not ask for judicial reviews of Blue Ribbons who were sentenced leniently. One case was the two transportation workers who livelihood was negatively impacted by Occupy Central. These two went to throw eggs at Joshua Wong, and the magistrate merely fined them. Unfortunately this is a bad example, because the Department of Justice did file a judicial review later and the two were sentenced to two weeks in prison. Of course, the latter part of the story was conveniently not cited by Leong.

Paul Hsieh said that nobody listens to Benny Tai after the 2014 Occupy Central. Then he told Alan Leong directly: "Actually not many people listen to what you say." Alan Leong knew his own situation and admitted that young people consider him to be "an old fart." "I have not been able to achieve anything in more than two decades."

- (Bastille Post) August 24, 2017.

Paul Hsieh is going after Benny Tai more so than the Civic Square 3. In the Ming Pao interview, Hsieh said that Benny Tai has been like an amoeba. On day one, Tai said: "I am an academician, not a politician." But Hsieh looked at what Tai has done over the past few years and concluded: "If you have changed, you should acknowledge it. You are no longer a scholar." And if he is not a scholar, he should not pretend to be a scholar in discussing the academic basis for civil obedience. Hsieh said that Tai has charges around his neck and needs to defend himself, so how people still trust him when he tries to rationalize the proprieties and limitations of civil disobedience?

Hsieh said that if Tai dares to engage in civil disobedience, then he should be prepared to accept the consequences, even if the government is filing different charges. "Tai is still whimpering that the government should not be charging with certain crimes. Can you haggle the price after the fact? When you engage in civil disobedience, can you insist that you can only be charged under Section something-or-the-other and nothing else? Are you joking? Ma Zedong said that the revolution is not inviting guests to dinner, neither is civil disobedience."

Hsieh is complaining so heatedly against Tai. He is actually expressing the feelings of many other Senior Counsels, especially those who are graduates of the Hong Kong University School of Law. These people have seen Benny Tai using his position as Associate Professor of the Hong Kong University School of Law to engage in politicking and destroying rule-of-law and the reputation of HKU in the process.

- (SCMP) Those who are leading our youth into lawbreaking should take a look in the mirror. By Alex Ho. August 19, 2017.

Its always painful to watch idealistic young people being sent to jail for their beliefs. But this does not mean they dont deserve their punishment or that they are being persecuted. Opposition groups and some overseas commentators have called the jailing of Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Alex Chow Yong-kang and Nathan Law Kwun-chung, a suppression of dissent. The New York Times editorialists have called the trio prisoners of conscience.

They are nothing of the sort. Free societies routinely jail protesters whose actions result in violence. The three spearheaded the storming of the government headquarters at Tamar which triggered the 79-day Occupy protests of 2014. If nothing else, their actions caused injuries to 10 security guards.

Though they were asked to impose tougher sentences than the community services the three were originally ordered to complete by a lower court, the High Court judges have been lenient in jailing them for six to eight months. The maximum sentence could have been up to five years.

The opposition has been quick to denounce the rulings as persecution. In a statement of breathtaking irresponsibility, disqualified lawmaker Long Hair Leung Kwok-hung claimed the court was effectively cooperating with the executive branch to root out dissent. In a similar vein, an editorial in The New York Times claims Hong Kong is in danger of losing its status as a free haven within China. Tellingly, as further evidence to its claim, the Times cites the alleged kidnapping and torture of Democratic Party member Howard Lam Tsz-kin, completely oblivious to the fact that he has been charged for fabricating his story.

Its clear that many opposition politicians and activists only respect the rule of law and an independent court when rulings turn their way. Some foreign commentators are only too happy to parrot their claims, however specious.

Long column inches have been devoted to the recent jailing of activists. But perhaps the wisest commentary is from the latest judgment: There can be no excuse for those committing unlawful acts in the name of exercising those very freedoms they claim they are fighting for. Pursuing what activists think are noble ideals is not a free pass for undermining social order and public safety.

Who has led, or rather misled, our young idealists to jail? Its not the public prosecutors. Its those educated people who, as the judges wrote, recklessly encouraged others to break the law while claiming the moral high ground.

Those people know who they are.

- (SCMP) Hong Kong itself is undermining judicial independence. By Alex Lo. August 22, 2017.

As thousands turned out to protest the latest jailing of young political activists on Sunday, it may be a good time for all of us to recall the prophetic words of Kemal Bokhary.

Five years ago, the retired Court of Final Appeal judge warned that a storm of unprecedented ferocity was gathering over the rule of law in Hong Kong. Sadly, his warning has come to pass. In a deeply divided society such as ours, judges and prosecutors find it increasingly difficult to make decisions and deliver rulings without being accused of political biases or hidden motives.

Many of those who marched in Sundays rally and others who took part in anti-government internet forums have been quick to paint the latest court judgments as political persecution at the behest of the Hong Kong and central governments. Whether they genuinely believe it or not, many are now shouting, The rule of law is dead. The claim is that our courts have turned red or are being mainlandised.

People have personal preferences and different political stances. They may agree or disagree with particular court rulings, especially those of a highly political nature involving anti-government activists. But to conclude from your own disagreements that the impartiality of our courts or the rule of law no longer exists is a dangerous leap.

Of course, all political sides have been guilty of making this unfounded claim. But the more it is repeated, the easier it will become a self-fulfilling prophecy. After all, it was the pro-government camp and its allies who first started to accuse judges of being closet yellow ribbon sympathisers when they committed protesters to community service rather than jailing them. Now that the Court of Appeal has toughened the sentences of 16 activists in two different cases to jail time, its the turn of the anti-government forces to round on the judges.

In February, thousands of police officers rallied in anger when seven of their colleagues were each jailed for two years after being found guilty of beating up Occupy protester Ken Tsang Kin-chiu. Practically every group that has a stake in political struggle has been upset at the courts for one decision or another. But that, fortunately, shows that our judicial officers are soldiering on valiantly in the face of unprecedented challenges and so are displeasing all sides.

People have long worried that Beijing will undermine judicial independence and the rule of law. Actually, we ourselves now pose the greatest threat.

- (SCMP) Kangaroo courts in Hong Kong and Joshua Wong for the Nobel peace prize. At least, according to one newspaper. By Michael Chugani. August 22, 2017.

Kangaroo courts have arrived in Hong Kong. Our once fearlessly independent judges now huddle in secret with top government officials to brainstorm trumped-up charges against our young Davids of democracy who battle the Goliath that is communist China.

Judges churn out prisoners of conscience, making them heroes worthy of the Nobel Peace Prize. Fiction? No. Fact, as told by The New York Times.

Its opinion page editor Bari Weiss dismissed as bogus the unlawful assembly charges against Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Nathan Law Kwun-chung, and Alex Chow Yong-kang. Bogus? Well, maybe scaling the security fence at government headquarters and inciting others to follow, which left 10 policemen injured, is not illegal assembly but youngsters practising climbing skills.

Perhaps Weiss didnt know the trio actually did that, or it could be the venerable papers fact-checkers were asleep at the wheel. I suggest they check out the plentiful internet footage of what really happened on September 26, 2014. It may help clear Weiss mind.

I am sure The New York Times can afford to send her here to visit the jailed Wong, Law, and Chow to ask why they dutifully served their community service sentence instead of appealing against it as a bogus charge.

But that kind of factual reporting is now too little, too late. Our judges have already been tarred and feathered as lackeys, not only by the Western media but by many in our own legal profession.

What baffles me is if these lawyers and legal academics in the opposition camp believe we now have corrupt judges who jail people solely for their political beliefs, why remain in the profession? Why represent clients in kangaroo courts?

Just quit and fight the good fight in the political arena against tainted judges. Maybe the big bucks our barristers charge trumps any moral conviction against kangaroo courts.

I ask this not to defend the communist regime that rules us or to criticise Wong, Law, and Chow, but why appeal if the three believe our judges are biased anyway? Why not serve out their sentences?

That way they can become Nobel Peace Prize candidates as Weiss suggested. Surely, its worth spending six months behind bars to be in the same league as Malala, who took a Taliban bullet in the head, and Liu Xiaobo, who spent much of his life in jail and died while still being incarcerated.

- (EJ Insight) The moral corruption of Hong Kong's opposition. By Michael Chugani. August 31, 2017.

Hong Kongs opposition has said and done many things in the name of democracy. Some of its actions deserve praise, such as its steadfast fight for democracy. I dont think its bottom line of so-called true democracy without any role for Beijing is achievable but I respect opposition leaders for sticking to it. But the opposition has at times also used tactics that insult the good name of democracy.

The Mong Kok riot, although instigated by a radical faction of the opposition, was still done in the name of democracy. Instead of condemning the violence outright, mainstream opposition leaders either remained silent or justified the riot with the excuse that root causes drove young people to such acts.

Opposition legislators routinely abuse the core principles of democracy with their insolent behavior towards government officials who appear at Legislative Council meetings. Their treatment of former chief executive Leung Chun-ying was particularly insulting. They even refused to observe Legco decorum by standing up when Leung entered and left the chamber.

But all that pales in comparison to the oppositions latest tactic to promote its political self-interest. Judicial independence forms the very foundation of freedom-loving Hong Kongs values. Our judiciary has always been considered sacred by Hongkongers. The independence of our judges is never questioned.

Our internationally-respected legal system is what prevents us from becoming just another mainland city. Thats why I find it so appalling that the opposition, including some of its leaders from the legal profession, is now virtually accusing our judges of colluding with the government to politically persecute young activists.

Any honest person will know student leaders Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Nathan Law Kwun-chung, and Alex Chow Yong-kang were represented by top lawyers in an open and fair trial on charges of unlawful assembly arising from their storming of government headquarters which triggered the Occupy protest. They chose not to appeal their community service sentence, implicitly accepting their guilt. Any honest person will also know the three were again represented by top lawyers in a transparent court proceeding when the government appealed against the community service sentence as being too light.

Yet the opposition dragged Hong Kongs judiciary through the mud in the international arena when the three appeal judges ruled the initial sentences were too lenient and jailed the trio from six to eight months. I can understand the western media saying our judges are now under the thumb of Beijing, the charge against Wong, Law, and Chow was bogus, and they have therefore become prisoners of conscience.

It fits into the agenda of the western media to say that. They like to romanticize Hong Kongs democracy movement as the oppressed fighting against an authoritarian regime. Their reporters, columnists, and editorial writers can be excused for seeing Hong Kong through such a lens because they either dont live here or have a limited understanding of Hong Kong.

But the opposition should know better. They should know its a sick joke to say Hongkongers are an oppressed people devoid of rights. If people here really are politically persecuted, those who have accused our judges of being puppets would already be in gulags without trial. As former Democratic Party chairperson Emily Lau Wai-hing told me in a TV interview, Hong Kong has all the trappings of democracy except the right to vote for the chief executive.

The western media has proclaimed as proof that our judges are doing Beijings bidding in stifling the voices of young democracy activists after they jailed Wong, Law, and Chow, thirteen others for storming Legco, and after the Court of Final Appeal rejected Sixtus Baggio Leung Chung-hang and Yau Wai-chings appeal against disqualification as Legco members. But why have opposition leaders fed and fanned this smearing of our judges instead of making clear to the world our judiciary is totally independent?

The only reason I can think of is that they dont even mind attacking Hong Kongs most treasured core value to serve their political agenda. It is now apparent they consider it fair game to destabilize a pillar of our free society an independent judiciary if rulings by judges dont go their way. Moral corruption is the only way to describe such behavior.

I am well aware that in todays Hong Kong any criticism of the opposition will be labeled as anti-democracy. Therefore, if you criticize the opposition for claiming without solid proof that our judges are no longer independent, you will be mocked as anti-democracy or a Beijing puppet. But such clownish behavior has never dissuaded me from speaking my mind, which is a cornerstone of democracy. The opposition does not have a monopoly on democracy. I will never let anyone define my democratic credentials.

For the record, I fully support democracy in the shape of one person, one vote. I agree Beijing doesnt trust Hong Kong people as much as it should. I feel Beijing sometimes stretches the meaning of one country, two systems to suit its policies towards Hong Kong. Anyone with half a brain knows the Liaison Office had meddled in the March chief executive election. I am uncomfortable with Beijings tightening grip on us. And I feel the establishment camp should find its own voice instead of always taking a cue from the Liaison Office.

But the opposition is not entirely blameless for the central governments harder line towards us. Some opposition leaders still find it hard, twenty years after reunification, to come to terms with the fact that we are now a part of China. They believe that only so-called true democracy can act as a shield against Beijings communist regime. They ignore the fact that Beijing took a much softer line towards us after reunification but hardened its position only when the opposition challenged its authority over Hong Kong as the sovereign power.

I believe the damage done in the past few weeks to the international reputation of our independent judiciary is irreparable. It has now already sunk into the minds of the western media, western politicians, and many people in the west and here in Hong Kong that our judges are no longer independent. The most revered of our core values one that makes us different from mainland China has been undermined. And we have our opposition to thank for it.

- (SCMP) So this is what Trump meant by fake news just look at reports about Hong Kongs democracy activists. By Yonden Lhatoo. August 24, 2017.

One of lifes supreme ironies is how US President Donald Trump regularly calls out the giants of the American news media for biased reporting and fake news, considering that lying and peddling ludicrous alternative facts is second nature to him.

I mean, how can the long-trusted luminaries of international journalism be wrong and someone like Trump be right, right? Wrong. Im beginning to understand where hes coming from these days.

Just look at the Western media commentary on the recent jailing of young democracy activists by Hong Kong courts, with particular reference to the six- to eight-month prison terms for Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Nathan Law Kwun-chung and Alex Chow Yong-kang.

The government succeeded in securing tougher sentences for the three musketeers after a lower court gave them slaps on the wrist for instigating and taking part in the clashes at government headquarters in 2014. That illegal and violent protest effectively triggered the Occupy sit-ins 79 days of road blocks and all manner of lawlessness in the name of civil disobedience and democracy.

The New York Times dismissed due process of law in the city as bogus charges and called for the trio to be honoured with a Nobel Peace Prize. The Wall Street Journal went a step further to declare: China forces local judges to send democratic activists to jail.

Seriously? Our Court of Appeal judges were under orders from the Communist Party in Beijing to throw people in jail? And they complied? Give me a break.

Let me set the record straight for these astonishingly ill-informed bastions of balanced reporting, and anyone whos lapping up the fake news theyre publishing.

We are all free to protest peacefully on the streets of Hong Kong, whether its over the plight of puppy dogs in pet shops or Beijings restrictions on electing our leaders by universal suffrage.

But the word peaceful is paramount here. In exerting our rights to freedom of assembly and expression, if we choose to climb over fences into restricted areas, smash our way into the Legislative Council building, or sit in the middle of the road and block traffic, there are laws in black and white entailing prosecution and punishment for such offences. Its that simple, really.

Court of Appeal judge Derek Pang Wai-cheong couldnt have made it clearer: To treat long-standing and effective laws as unreasonable restrictions obstructing the freedom of expression, and to feel good about it after breaking the law as one wishes such conduct does not allow the court for any reason to handle it with excessive leniency. People who hold such views not only break the law in conduct, but despise and transcend the law in spirit.

How insulting that clueless commentators halfway across the world, with little to zero context about whats happening here, get to casually dismiss respected judges like Pang as puppets under orders from Beijing.

Groups like Human Rights Watch have glorified the activists as political prisoners and suggested their jailing signals the end of peaceful protest in the city.

Again, seriously? On Sunday, more than 20,000 protesters took to the streets to decry the court ruling. They didnt break any law, so there was no repression against them. As long as they remain peaceful like that, they are free to protest every day to their hearts content.

Like so many Hongkongers, Im all for greater democracy, but lets not kid ourselves. Take the hysterical headlines with dollops of salt: we have no Gandhi or Mandela in jail here.

Muppets, maybe, but martyrs? Sorry, no, not even close.

- (SCMP) Our courts will do more to protect freedoms than the foreign press. By Alex Lo. August 25, 2017.

Among leading newspapers in major Western countries, Hong Kongs political struggle has been about fighting against mainland Chinas encroachment. The jailing of student leaders Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Alex Chow Yong-kang and Nathan Law Kwun-chung fits this overall narrative perfectly. It means any facts that depart from this narrative or contradict it are either downplayed or ignored completely.

I have been reading The Washington Post, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal in the United States; the Financial Times and The Guardian in Britain; Le Monde in France; and the Globe and Mail in Canada. For foreign newspapers that have been decrying the jailings as the mainlands threat to the rule of law, they have reported virtually nothing about how local lawyers and former legal officials think about it. There were, of course, the obligatory quotes from the secretary for justice. But when the newspapers quoted so liberally the trios supporters, you would think they should at least find out what the legal profession thinks about the case.

No one bothers with the joint statement of the Bar Association and the Law Society which together represent all the lawyers in Hong Kong that the Court of Appeal ruling followed proper legal principles and that the three were given due process. There was coverage of the 25 international figures who came to the trios defence and called the activists political prisoners. Among them were former British foreign secretary Malcolm Rifkind, US Congressman Christopher Smith and Chris Patten, the last governor of Hong Kong.

But no one bothered with Bertrand de Speville, our former solicitor general and head of the Independent Commission Against Corruption, who merited publishing just a short letter to the editor in the Financial Times.

Lord Patten describes as deplorable the Hong Kong governments decision to appeal against the non-custodial sentences, he wrote. By suggesting that Beijing directly influenced the decision of the secretary of justice, he undermines at a stroke of his pen the rule of law that is a pillar of the free and pluralist way of life the city continues to enjoy.

Nor did the foreign press bother to quote Grenville Cross, former director of public prosecutions, who has said the initial community service sentences for the trio by a lower court were clearly wrong and that our judiciary remains fiercely independent.

Too bad, because in the end, the courts will do more to protect our freedoms than the foreign press.

- (Ming Pao) By Carmen Poon. August 21, 2017.

Before sentence was pronounced for Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow, they stood outside the courthouse like heroes. Their parents were there to say that they are proud of their children who are sacrificing themselves for the people of Hong Kong. I am perplexed when I heard this.

Why do you think that you represent the people of Hong Kong? You forced your way into Civic Square, injuring 10 security guards in the process. Have you ever visited them? Have you ever said sorry? Have you ever considered that the people whom you incited may be injured and/or jailed? A person who does not care about other human beings and who is willing to sacrifice the lives and interests of other people in order to elevate himself as hero is just a selfish prick.

How much suffering has the occupation of Central for 79 days caused? Occupy Central caused mental anguish, time losses and economic damages to many people. Can you pay them back? Why do you think that taking over Civic Square and Central district will realize your dreams?

You kidnapped all of Hong Kong, you raped the wishes of the people of Hong Kong, you stole the name "Hong Kong" to destroy law-and-order and created so much pain. You sacrificed the people of Hong Kong; you did not sacrifice for the people of Hong Kong.

You are free to pursue your ideals. But please keep to three things:

(1) Do not say that your ideals are my ideals and drag me into the water with you. In particular, please do not invoke "the people of Hong Kong" all the time.

(2) Since you know that you should go to jail if you break the law, you should face the consequences bravely instead of acting like a victim of political oppression.

(3) You should stick to managing your own future. Do not hurt other people and their properties and destroy public order in the name of "the future of Hong Kong."

It would be better for everybody if you can do this.

Also, can you please make up your mind about whether you are a 'child' or a 'leader'? Please be very sure. No more straddling on the fence, please. You cannot pretend to be a child sometimes in order to gain sympathy and leniency, and then turn around to fantasize that you are the Great Leader on whom the future of Hong Kong depends.

The real prison is not the four walls around you; it is your obstinately misguided mindset.

- What is Joshua Wong going through at the Pik Uk Correctional Institution. Earlier this year, there was a movie <With Prisoners> about youth prisoners at a correctional institution. Here is the English-subtitled trailer. The correctional officers think that the prisoners are there because they broke the law and therefore they must be made to learn of their mistakes.

Direct physical punishment is neither effective nor necessary. Instead the correctional officers apply collective punishment. Prisoners are routinely asked to line up and yell out their prisoner numbers, the crimes for which they were convicted and the dates, locations and lengths of their sentences. For example, "I am prisoner 336212 Team C; I was guilty of theft; on June 13th 2017 I was sentenced at Kowloon City District Court to three months." If one prisoner refuses, then the officer will say: "Someone in the team is refusing to report! Everybody in the team get down and do push-ups until I tell you to stop!"

In a way, this is exactly the philosophy behind Occupy Central. You don't or you can't attack the government directly. So you hold the rest of Hong Kong hostage and make their lives as miserable as possible. In the end, the people of Hong Kong will make the government satisfy your demands. It did not work out in Occupy Central. But it worked for the male lead in the movie.

- (SCMP) Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow are in jail because Hong Kong law demands it. By Rimsky Yuen. August 23, 2017.

On August 17, the Court of Appeal delivered its judgment on the application to review the sentences involving Joshua Wong Chi-fung, Alex Chow Yong-kang and Nathan Law Kwun-chung. The court sentenced the defendants to immediate custodial sentences of six to eight months.

The judgment has attracted extensive attention and discussions. Since the defendants have indicated an intention to appeal, it is not appropriate to go into matters which may affect the intended appeal. However, since some of the comments display a lack of understanding of the basic facts of the case or our legal system, it is important that there should be an explanation of the different stages of the legal and judicial process.

The first stage is prosecution. The defendants were prosecuted for offences involving unlawful assembly, which is defined in section 18 (1) of the Public Order Ordinance as follows: When three or more persons, assembled together, conduct themselves in a disorderly, intimidating, insulting or provocative manner intended or likely to cause any person reasonably to fear that the persons so assembled will commit a breach of the peace, or will by such conduct provoke other persons to commit a breach of the peace, they are an unlawful assembly.

Unlawful assembly is not concerned with the ideas (whether political or otherwise) that the people who organised or participated in the assembly sought to advocate. Rather, it focuses on whether the conduct of the people during the assembly was unlawful. Accordingly, the defendants were not prosecuted for their political ideas.

The second stage is the trial. There can be no doubt that the defendants were convicted after a fair and open trial. The defendants were legally represented, and they had every opportunity to make such submissions as they saw fit. At one stage, they lodged appeals against their convictions. However, they subsequently abandoned their appeals. Thus, they no longer take issue with their convictions.

The third stage is the review of sentence. The first review took place before the magistrate who convicted the defendants, pursuant to Section 104 of the Magistrates Ordinance. The second took place before the Court of Appeal, pursuant to section 81A of the Criminal Procedure Ordinance. Such a review can only be lodged if the sentence imposed by the trial judge is not authorised by law, is wrong in principle or is manifestly excessive or manifestly inadequate.

All these grounds for review only concern legal issues. Political considerations do not come into play, whether at the stage when the prosecution sought the review or when the Court of Appeal dealt with the application for review.

The hearing of the review was also open and transparent. All the submissions made by the prosecution were legal (as opposed to political). The defendants, again, were legally represented, and had every opportunity to advance such submissions as they saw fit.

If one reads the judgment (in particular, the leading judgment by Justice Jeremy Poon Shiu-chor), they will see that the reasons leading to the conclusion that imprisonment is appropriate are legal reasons, not political ones.

Further, as is made crystal clear in paragraph 171 of the judgment, the defendants were convicted and sentenced not because they exercised their right of assembly, demonstration or freedom of speech; but because they had overstepped the line allowed by the law and that they had committed serious unlawful acts.

Hong Kong has all along upheld judicial independence. The Hong Kong judiciary is well-known for their independence and quality. It is regrettable that some of the comments (including some by overseas media) sought to attack our judiciary. As I have repeatedly said, the public has a right to discuss judicial decisions, but no discussion should seek to undermine the integrity or impartiality of the judiciary.

As observed in an Australian decision: The authority of the law rests on public confidence, and it is important for the stability of society that the confidence of the public should not be shaken by baseless attacks on the integrity or impartiality of courts or judges (Gallagher vs Durack, 1983).

Some have queried the timing of the review applications, and alleged that there was an ulterior motive.

The timing of the review applications before the magistrate and the Court of Appeal are regulated by the relevant statutes. In the present case, the prosecution lodged the review applications within the relevant time prescribed by the statutes. The only reason it took almost a year for the Court of Appeal to hear the application was that it could not deal with the review of sentence until after the defendants appeals against conviction were disposed of (see section 81C (1) of the Criminal Procedure Ordinance).

The defendants appeals against conviction were scheduled to be heard on May 22. It was only after they abandoned their appeal on April 19 that the prosecution could proceed to fix a date for the hearing of the review of sentence, which eventually took place on August 9. In other words, the timing of these steps is not within the control of the prosecution, and any suggestion of an ulterior motive on the part of the prosecution is simply groundless.

The law in Hong Kong protects peoples fundamental rights, including the right to assembly, demonstration and freedom of speech. However, any exercise of such rights should be in a lawful manner (see paragraphs 110-112 of the judgment). From the start of the prosecution up to the review of sentence by the Court of Appeal, the defendants were dealt with strictly in accordance with the law.

The defendants were convicted and sentenced for their unlawful conduct, not for their political ideas.

With these explanations, I hope the public and the international community will continue to respect our independent judiciary and refrain from baseless attacks.

- (SCMP) Jailed Occupy trio crossed the line on civil disobedience at Civic Square. By Sherif A. Elgebeily. September 3, 2017.

When Nathan Law Kwun-chung, on the night of September 26, 2014, called on peaceful protesters to go into the Civic Square together ... [to] recapture the public space that belongs to us, he called for civil disobedience. But what precisely does this term mean? Did the occupation of Civic Square qualify?

Civil disobedience is the refusal to comply with laws on moral grounds, with the knowledge and acceptance of the repercussions. It is a fundamental expression of individual responsibility one knows what one is doing and does it anyway. It stems, firstly, from the belief that a law can in some cases be wrong and, second, the use of ones free will to actively disobey it; it has been used most notably by Gandhi and Martin Luther King.

On the surface, Law, Joshua Wong Chi-fung, and Alex Chow Yong-kang adhered fully to this definition: Law told his followers they may be prosecuted; none of the three denied participation in the incident; Wong expressed no regret to his probation officer; and Chow was prepared to accept the legal consequences of his actions.

Despite defending that their actions should not violate the law, they were aware that these did and would have consequences, and that court sentences would need to be suffered. Hence, they believed that what they were engaged in was legitimate civil disobedience: legally wrong though morally right.

However, one cannot group all forms of political protest under the umbrella of civil disobedience. One of the elements that sets it apart from terrorism is its peaceful nature, as it aims to address injustice without harm to citizens or public property. From a state security perspective, too, violence can never be accepted as a viable means to achieve political goals.

Although the trio called for non-violent means throughout the attempt to occupy Civic Square, their actions and those of the protesters undoubtedly ran contrary to this intention. Based on previous experience, they expected no physical attempts to stop them from entering the forecourt. However, as Law testified, if the security guards tried to stop them with their bodies, the participants would . . . remain standing in their original position, [and] therefore their action would not cause any injuries to the security guards. This in itself suggests an awareness that their intended actions had, at least in theory, the capacity to cause damage and/or injury.

Civil disobedience would have been to follow this plan, but the decision to push ahead in the face of a physical altercation tipped their actions over the line. Politics aside, Hong Kongs social order, the rule of law, and our societal norms dictate that their actions must have consequences.

- (HKG Pao) September 6, 2017. At the time of the incident, Nathan Law said that he is fearless and he will accept the legal consequences. Now that the court has sent him to 8 months in jail, he wants to get legal aid to lodge an appeal of the court ruling. So not only is he reneging on his original promise, he wants to waste taxpayer money too.

- (SCMP) February 6, 2018.

Hong Kong democracy activist Joshua Wong Chi-fung and two allies on Tuesday won their ultimate appeal against jail terms handed down for the storming of a government complex in the run-up to 2014s Occupy protests.

The Court of Final Appeal ruling meant Wong, Nathan Law Kwun-chung and Alex Chow Yong-kang would leave the court as free men.

But the highly anticipated judgment endorsed the lower Court of Appeals strict sentencing guidelines on future unlawful assemblies. The judges ruled that civil disobedience should carry little weight when the acts committed infringed upon criminal law and involved violence. 

It was right for the Court of Appeal to send the message that unlawful assemblies involving violence, even the relatively low degree of violence that occurred in the present appeals, will not be condoned, and convictions will justifiably attract prison sentences, Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma Tao-li said.

However, the judges also decided that it was inappropriate for the lower appeal court to have applied its new guidelines retrospectively to the three men to impose significantly more severe sentences, and therefore they unanimously allowed the appeal.

- (Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal) Final Appeal No. 8 of 2017 (Criminal) on appeal from CAAR No.4 of 2016

134. ... we would allow the appeals of each of the three appellants, quash the sentences of imprisonment imposed by the Court of Appeal and reinstate those imposed by the magistrate.

135. ...  the Court of Appeal was entitled to provide the guidance it did in relation to the appropriate sentences to be imposed in respect of large scale unlawful assemblies involving violence. Offenders in such future cases will therefore be subject to the new guidelines.

- The fight for pro-democracy activists to receive free passes for crimes against humanity will continue until victory is achieved! Long live FREEDOM, DEMOCRACY, HUMAN RIGHTS and UNIVERSAL VALUES!

- If you find the court document too tedious, here is a simple analogy:

Suppose Fuhrer Adolf Hitler was arrested alive after the fall of Berlin. He was brought to trial in Nuremburg for crimes against humanity. He was found guilty based upon overwhelming evidence. In sentencing, the judges declared that there are no sentencing guidelines because there has never been any trials over crimes as grave as these. The judges came up with a set of guidelines under which Mr. Hitler would be sentenced to death by hanging to be carried out immediately. However, these guidelines cannot be applied retrospectively to Mr. Hitler. Therefore Mr. Hitler was released immediately, and he lived a happy and long life under his own name in Austria afterwards.

- (SCMP) Theres just no pleasing some people. By Alex Lo. February 8, 2018.

Some people just demand to have their cake and eat it, too. The citys highest court has set free three Occupy protest leaders, a decision which presumably vindicates the independence of our judiciary.

But nary a word about that from those brave opposition figures who profess themselves to be our greatest defenders of the rule of law.

Instead, they round on the court judgment, starting with one of the freed activists, Joshua Wong Chi-fung, who denounced it as a sugar-coated harsh punishment and claimed more and more activists will be locked up because of this harsh judgment.

Law Lay Dream, an activist legal group, claimed the ruling breached international legal standards. I dont know if the groups English name is intentional, but it sounds a lot like a crude Cantonese phrase that roughly means self-degradation.

Former University of Hong Kong law don Michael Davis warned it could deter people from taking part in street protests.

The Progressive Lawyers Group said the ruling would further restrict peoples rights to peaceful assembly as guaranteed under the International Covenant on Civil Rights, to which Hong Kong is a signatory.

So, whats this evil dictatorial ruling coming from our highest court? It merely upheld the lower courts stricter sentencing guidelines.

Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma Tao-li said: It was right for the Court of Appeal to send the message that unlawful assemblies involving violence, even the relatively low degree of violence that occurred in the present appeals, will not be condoned, and convictions will justifiably attract prison sentences.

I thought the Occupy protests were all about peace and love, as advertised by its leaders, from law lecturer Benny Tai Yiu-ting and his fellow academic rebels to Wong and his two partners-in-crime Nathan Law Kwun-chung and Alex Chow Yong-kang.

Incidentally, the three young men have been nominated by a couple of American politicians for the Nobel Peace Prize; and I emphasise the word peace here.

Is not being peaceful the crucial element that distinguishes civil disobedience from other forms of protest?

Apparently not! The oppositions new argument, and also that of their academic supporters, is that its enough that my intention is to be peaceful, so its not my responsibility if protests I take part in or organise spiral out of control, causing violence and injuring some people. Thats the international standard? Give me a break.

No, the opposition just wants to have it both ways. 

Previous: #775: The Case of Lam Tsz-kin

(SCMP) August 15, 2017.

Instead of being pushed into a van and kidnapped by two Putonghua-speaking men, Hong Kong activist Howard Lam Tsz-kin got on a minibus in Mong Kok headed for Sai Kung, according to a police source close to the investigation, casting further doubt on his claims.

The latest revelation came after a police spokeswoman said investigators had found significant discrepancies between Lams account of his alleged kidnapping and his actual activities on the day.

At a press briefing early Tuesday morning, superintendent Cheng Lai-ki of the Kowloon West regional crime unit said police believed Lam had given officers false information.

She disclosed that the Democratic Party member had left Mong Kok alone safely by public transport on the day in question.

Our information did not show that he was pushed into a car as he claimed ... and his whereabouts were not like what he has said. We believe his information was false, Cheng said.

She said looking into the motives for Lams fabrications would be one of the directions taken by the investigation.

The injuries on his thighs, which Lam had shown reporters as evidence of abuse by his captors, would be examined by forensic experts.

Serious doubts about Lams story were earlier raised by FactWire news agency, which published a report on Monday night directly contradicting his version of events.

FactWire cited multiple video clips taken by CCTV cameras from Yau Ma Tei to discredit Lams claim that he was abducted and drugged by Putonghua-speaking men on Thursday at around 4pm after he bought a soccer shirt from a shop and was on his way to the MTR station on Pitt Street.

Lam claimed he was forced into a van on Portland Street and taken to a building in an unknown location where he was tortured by his abductors who punched staples into his legs, which he later showed the media and had removed surgically in a hospital.

He said he found himself dumped at a beach in Sai Kung between 1 and 2am, from where he took a taxi home. He held a press conference, backed by his party, to tell his story at 11am, before reporting the case to police.

FactWire reported that it had collected and put together nine pieces of footage to reconstruct the incident. They showed the activist leaving Portland Street at around 5pm.

Alone and unscathed, Lam put on a cap, surgical mask and sunglasses before walking back towards Hamilton Street and then towards Nathan Road. No suspicious persons mentioned by Lam were seen during the three-minute walk, the agency reported.

Lam appeared to be alone the whole time. A review of CCTV footage also found no suspicious persons or the alleged kidnappers.

FactWire also contacted Lam at his Ma On Shan home, where he first refused to comment, but was later persuaded to watch the footage and respond.

The Democrat denied he was the masked man in the footage, saying: It is horrible. I dont know whether someone wanted to do something behind my back ... people in my attire that day can be found anywhere. If someone wants to put me into trouble, they could have arranged a body double.

(YouTube) Closed circuit television videos obtained by FactWire

(Hong Kong Free Press) August 15, 2017.

Multiple CCTV clips obtained by FactWire appear to contradict democracy activist Howard Lam Tsz-kins own version of events in his alleged kidnapping by Chinese agents.

Last Friday, the Democratic Party member told reporters that he was snatched and drugged by two Putonghua-speaking men last Thursday at around 4pm, moments after buying a football shirt from a shop in Yau Ma Tei and on his way to the MTR station on Pitt Street.

Lam said he was then tortured and interrogated over his plan to send a signed photo of footballer Lionel Messi to Liu Xia, widow of Chinese Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo. The incident allegedly occurred over a few hours at an unknown location, before he was released at a beach.

However, FactWire can reveal that multiple CCTV clips appear to show Lam leaving Portland Street, where he was allegedly abducted and forced into a car, at around 5pm. Alone and unscathed, Lam put on a cap, surgical mask and sunglasses before walking back towards Hamilton Street and then towards Nathan Road. No suspicious persons mentioned by Lam were seen during the three-minute walk.

To reconstruct the incident, FactWire collected nine items of CCTV footage from six shops on Portland Street near Hamilton Street and Pitt Street, showing various locations between 3pm to 7pm on the day of the incident. Lam appears in seven of the nine clips.

One clip captured by a shop camera on the corner of Portland Street and Hamilton Street, which points at the store from which Lam bought the shirt, shows him emerging from the shop at 5:41pm.

Lam is wearing a black t-shirt, dark blue shorts, white-rimmed black trainers and a dark-coloured watch on his left hand, and he is carrying a dark-coloured backpack. He then turns right and walks along Portland Street towards Pitt Street. Both of his feet point inwards as he walks.

The second and third clip, each pointing in the direction of Hamilton Street and Pitt Street respectively, were filmed by two cameras in a noodle restaurant located 50 metres from the first CCTV camera.

One camera caught a man emerging at 5:43pm from the direction of Hamilton Street. Already with a cap and sunglasses on, he is then captured putting on a surgical mask and putting his left hand through the left strap of his backpack as he moves from one side of the pavement near the road to the other near the wall.

Although the camera could not capture the face of the man, his outfit, build and walking posture match Lams in previous footage. The shops second camera pointing the opposite direction also caught him, back against the camera, walking towards the direction of Pitt Street.

Hamilton Street cuts through Portland Street, and the two shops mentioned above are located on each side. From the store at the junction of Hamilton Street, one would pass by Hamilton Street Rest Garden, two vacant shops, then a coffin shop and an electrical appliances store before reaching the noodle restaurant.

No security cameras were installed at the above locations, while the only camera installed at a building next to the garden also points in another direction.

According to a fourth camera set in a shop 20 metres away, near the corner of Portland Street and Pitt Street, the same man then walks across Portland Street to the other side of the road at around 5:43pm.

Two other clips obtained from a restaurant along the same pavement then show that he starts walking back towards Hamilton Street at 5:44pm. With his head down, the man keeps on walking and eventually turns right onto Nathan Road.

The CCTV camera at a shop next to the restaurant also caught him walking back towards the direction of Hamilton Street along Portland Street.

The seven clips are coherent. It took three minutes in total for Lam to leave the football store on Portland Street, cross Hamilton Street towards the junction with Pitt Street, before walking to the opposite pavement and heading back to Hamilton Street. He was out of CCTV coverage as turned right onto Nathan Road.

Lam appeared to be alone the whole time. A review of CCTV footage also found no suspicious persons or the alleged kidnappers.

FactWire reporters have completed the same route on foot in two and a half minutes at a normal pace.

When told by FactWire reporters at his home in Ma On Shan that he was captured leaving Portland Street safely, Lam initially refuse to provide a response or watch the footage.

As he gave in and agreed to watch the clips, Lam said the masked man was not him and stressed that he did not put on a surgical mask or cap on that day.

Lam said that the whole thing was bizarre. He said: It is horrible. I dont know whether someone wanted to do something behind my back people in my attire that day can be found anywhere. If someone wants to get me into trouble, they could have arranged a body double.

Lam stated that the police requested shop owners not to hand CCTV footage to reporters. He also questioned the source and credibility of the footage due to the time differences as marked on the screens, adding that it should have been the police instead of reporters to confront him on the matter.

(Ming Pao) August 15, 2017.

FactWire said that after they published the videos, the public raised more doubts. Their reporters were accused of being fed information to coordinate with the police. Therefore FactWire is disclosing the process of their investigation.

One hour after the Democratic Party press conference, FactWire sent out reporters to the scene to gather information. Some of the businesses furnished their surveillance videos. So on the first day, they had already procured three of the videos.

At about 4pm that day, a large number of police officers were sent to the scene to gather evidence. The next day, FactWire revisited the businesses and obtained the first video showing Lam Tsz-kin leaving the sports jersey store. By the night of August 13 (Sunday), FactWire had procured 8 videos from 5 businesses. FactWire then decided to contact Lam Tsz-kin for comments.

At first, Lam Tsz-kin declined to be interviewed. Even though the reporter said that they had procured videos, Lam refused to look at them. The reporter interviewed Democratic Party legislator Lam Cheuk-ting who happened to be visiting there. Lam Cheuk-ting went back and spoke to Lam Tsz-kin. Then Lam Tsz-kin agreed to be interviewed. Afterwards Lam said that it was very "bizarre."

FactWire re-emphasized that they went out with the simple intention of ferreting out the facts and reconstruct the event. They emphasized that their reporters have never contacted any law enforcement agency.

- Shooting the messenger: Sigmund Freud considered shooting the messenger a "marginal case of this kind of defense...of fending off what is distressing or unbearable", citing the example of "the famous lament of the Spanish Moors Ay de mi Alhama, which tells how King Boabdil received the news of the fall of his city of Alhama. He feels that this loss means the end of his rule. But he will not 'let it be true....He threw the letters in the fire and killed the messenger'". Freud added that "a further determinant of this behaviour of the king was his need to combat a feeling of powerlessness. By burning the letters and having the messenger killed he was still trying to show his absolute power."

- (Silent Majority For HK) August 17, 2017. In discussing the case, Civic Party chairman Alan Leong said on radio that he is not a friend of Lam Tsz-kin and is not knowledgeable about Lam's mental state. Therefore Leong finds it inappropriate to comment on why Lam chose to hold a press conference before going to the police.

However, Leong suspects that the Hong Kong Police leaked the progress of their investigation to FactWire. Appearing on the same radio program, legislator Paul Tse said that there was no reason why the police would do so, because this will only interfere with their investigation.

Alan Leong said that his original comments was based upon the situation and information available at the time. But at this stage, everybody should shut up until the police has completed their investigation.

(TVB) August 15, 2017.

TVB has obtained another video which showed that a similarly dressed (black shirt, dark blue pants, black-top white-bottom sneakers, pigeon toe walking style) man appearing alone about 10 minutes later in a back lane between Dundas Street and Hamilton Street.

According to information, the police determined that Lam Tsz-kin went to a fast food restaurant on Nathan Road first. At around 6pm, he used a back lane to get to Dundas Street where he took a minibus to Sai Kung. He later went to the beach at Tai Mong Tsai Road.

(Oriental Daily) August 16, 2017.

According to our canvassing of the stores around the Sai Kung minibus terminal, many of the BBQ restaurants and hotels have provided their surveillance videos to the police. The Shum Tsai Kee noodle shop provided the videos from two cameras to the police. According to employee Mr. Shen, the individual in the video wore a baseball cap, sunglasses and surgical mask, which makes it likely to be Lam Tsz-kin. Shen said that Lam is not a celebrity, so why would anyone bother to find a body double in order to kidnap him? Besides, "where are you going to find someone of the same physique to walk around the same place at the same time?"

The Tung Chun Toy Store next door also provided videos to the police and the media. Owner Ms. Ching said that Lam had been inconsistent with his multiple versions of stories. The surveillance videos show that Lam is unlikely to have been kidnapped. "I tend not to believe him. It is highly improbable."

(Oriental Daily) August 15, 2017.

[4:50am] Police detectives took Lam Tsz-kin back to his home at Kam Huan House, Kam Fung Estate, Ma On Shan district and conducted a search. They took a number of items as evidence, including three mobile phones, one computer, one iPad, one pair of sunglasses and one eyeglass case. Lam was taken to the Ma On Shan Police Station and stayed there for about 5 minutes. He was then taken back to the Hung Hom Police Station and held overnight.

According to the police, Lam Tsz-kin was arrested at 12:30am in Tai Kok Tsui on suspicion of making a false report to mislead police officers. The police have checked the surveillance videos taken by nearby shops and interviewed the businesses. Their findings were at odds with what Lam Tsz-kin said. The preliminary findings are that he left Mong Kok by vehicle safely on his own and was not pushed onto a vehicle. Furthermore his trail was not as described, as he had not gone near some of the places as he said.

(Oriental Daily) August 15, 2017.

The police have spread their search and found more surveillance videos. Lam Tsz-kin was seen to have boarded a red minibus from Dundas Street to Sai Kung city centre. This minibus departs from the Kwong Wah Hospital Outpatient building, goes through Nathan Road, Waterloo Road, Prince Edward East, Clearwater Bay Road, Sai Kung Road to the minibus terminal at Sai Kung Pier Wai Man Road.

(HK01) August 15, 2017.

Along Fuk Man Road from the Sai Kung Promenade towards the Sai Kung city centre, a number of businesses said that the police have asked them on August 13 (Sunday) evening whether they had seen Lam Tsz-kin. Some of the businesses (Tak Hing Noodles and the Filipino grocery store M2M Store) said that the police took their surveillance videos. The businesses said that they didn't notice Lam Tsz-kin. On Po Tung Road, the Hoi Shing Restaurant and Cava spanish restaurant also said that the police came and took their surveillance videos, but they don't recall seeing Lam Tsz-kin.

(Ming Pao) August 17, 2017.

According to information, the police have a surveillance video which showed the man with the baseball cap, mask and sunglasses walking alone by a BBQ field on Wai Man Road, Sai Kung district at about 7pm. They also have another video showing this man walking alone before sundown on Tai Mong Tsai Road to the rocky beach opposite Luna House. However, there is a gap between 7pm and 2am. Then at 2am, Lam Tsz-kin was recorded in the lobby of his apartment building in Ma On Shan and also by nearby convenience stores. But the police could not detect any signs of sand or mud on his body.

(Hong Kong Free Press) August 17, 2017.

Democratic Party member Howard Lam appeared in court on Thursday on charges of misleading police officers. He was released on HK$5,000 bail and is not allowed to leave Hong Kong until his next court hearing on September 14. The case was heard at the Kowloon City Magistrates Courts. Lam was initially set to be absent from the hearing as he was hospitalised, but the police said his doctors believed he could be discharged and attend.

(SCMP) November 22, 2017.

The charge against a Hong Kong democracy activist who claimed he was kidnapped and tortured by mainland Chinese agents has been changed to one of making a false report of a crime, four months after he was brought to court under the initial charge of misleading the police.

Democratic Party member Howard Lam Tsz-kin, 42, posted a photo of a document on a social media platform on Tuesday afternoon, saying that he received a notice earlier that day from police about the change.

The document, titled Amendment of Charge, stated that Lam knowingly made a false report of crime to police officer Wong Kai-pui in a ward at Queen Mary Hospital on August 11. Lam claimed in his report to Wong that he was abducted on the afternoon of August 10 in Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon.

Police said Lam had violated item 64(a) of the Police Force Ordinance.

Lam was originally charged under item 64(b) of the ordinance misleading the police on August 16. Upon conviction, both offences could lead to a fine of HK$1,000 and imprisonment of six months. The ordinance also stipulates that any amended charge shall be read and explained to the defaulter.

CAP 232 Police Force Ordinance

64. Offence of making false report of commission of offence, etc. Any person who knowingly

(a) makes or causes to be made to any police officer a false report of the commission of any offence; or

(b) misleads any police officer by giving false information or by making false statements or accusations,

shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine of $1,000 and to imprisonment for 6 months.


- CAP 232 Police Force Ordinance

Article 64. Offence of making false report of commission of offence, etc. 

Any person who knowingly

(a) makes or causes to be made to any police officer a false report of the commission of any offence; or

(b) misleads any police officer by giving false information or by making false statements or accusations,

shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine of $1,000 and to imprisonment for 6 months.

- Collateral damages:

Democratic Party:

- (TVB) August 15, 2017. Democratic Party chairman Wu Chi-wai showed up after being in deep cover for so long to declare that the Democratic Party will make a solemn accounting after the truth of the Lam Tsz-kin affair comes out. Wu said that the Democratic Party called for a press conference based upon the information that Lam Tsz-kin provided to Martin Lee, Albert Ho and Lam Cheuk-ting as well as the  physical wounds. The ensuing publicity would provide protection for Lam Tsz-kin's personal safety. Wu said that since the investigation is still ongoing, it was inappropriate for the Democratic Party to comment.

- (Silent Majority HK) August 15, 2017. HK01 tried to call up Democratic Party members to ask them if "someone was dressed up as Lam Tsz-kin to frame him"? Everybody (Martin Lee, Albert Ho, Lee Wing-tat, Lam Cheuk-ting) avoided this like the plague except for one. Legislator Helena Wong (Democratic Party) had been quiet while this was going. But she came out after Lam Tsz-kin was arrested and told HK01 that she questioned whether the media found the same videos as the police did. Clearly Wong is sticking to her nickname of "Cloud-head" and being deliberately contrarian.

- Of course, the media did not get the same videos as the police. The noodle shop may have been willing to share the video with the FactWire reporter and the police, but the MTR will only give their videos to the police but not the media. So the police will have even more videos.

- (HKG Pao) August 15, 2017. Democratic Party ex-chairman Albert Ho said that he was surprised by how the crime victim Lam Tsz-kin has been turned into a suspected criminal. He said that he will not "easily suspect the victim." He urged the police to conduct a thorough investigation.

- (Oriental Daily) August 15, 2017. Democratic Party ex-chairman Albert Ho said that there is still uncertainty about whether the man with the baseball cap, surgical mask and sunglasses is Lam Tsz-kin. Besides he thinks that the police must explain how Lam Tsz-kin left Mong Kok that day. Right now, we cannot assume that Lam Tsz-kin is a liar and we cannot assume that the police have sufficient evidence. Will the Democratic Party apologize if Lam Tsz-kin did mislead the police? Albert Ho said that he does not answer hypothetical questions.

- (Ming Pao) August 15, 2017. Democratic Party ex-chairman Albert Ho said on Commercial Radio: "All the facts have been placed in front of everybody. You can all think about them. I am not going to comment."

- (Oriental Daily) August 15, 2017. Our reporter called up Martin Lee for comment. He said simply "The Democratic Party has issued a statement." He said that he will not comment anymore on this incident. Then he hung up quickly. Other attendees at the press conference such as Ng Wing-fai (Democratic Party Central Committee member), Lee Wing-tat (Democratic Party former legislator) and Lee Cheuk-yan (Labour Party former legislator) did not pick up their phones.

- (HKG Pao) August 15, 2017. Previously Democratic Party legislator Lam Cheuk-ting had said on radio that it was wrong for Secretary for Security John Lee Ka-chiu to say that there is no evidence to support Lam Tsz-kin's story. Lam Cheuk-ting said that the staples are the physical evidence and Lam Tsz-kin is the eyewitness.

- (Ming Pao) August 15, 2017. On radio, Democratic Party legislator Lam Cheuk-ting said that he was having dinner at Lam Tsz-kin's home last night when the FactWire reporter came to ask for comments on the videos. Lam Tsz-kin refused to view the videos, but Lam Cheuk-ting saw them first. Afterwards, Lam Cheuk-ting convinced Lam Tsz-kin to view them too. Lam Cheuk-ting agreed that the man who wore the baseball cap, surgical mask and sunglasses resembled Lam Tsz-kin in physical appearance, but he cannot be totally sure. But Lam Cheuk-ting said that Lam Tsz-kin told him personally that this was not him. Lam Cheuk-ting wants the police to disclose their information as quickly as possible and get to the truth.

- Fuck! Is this the same guy who said that the police must not be allowed to utter a single word about the case? Now he wants them to divulge everything as quickly as possible?

- From "the police are not supposed to discuss the details of an ongoing investigation" to "the police must disclose their information as quickly as possible"? The goal posts have just been moved from one end to the other.

- (Silent Majority HK) August 15, 2017. Democratic Party legislator Lam Cheuk-ting said that it would be unfair to comment at this time and they need more confirmed evidence. He hoped the public understands that the Democratic Party is not an investigative agency and is not authorized to conduct detailed investigation.

- Fuck! The lack of an investigation never stopped you guys from concluding that Lam Tsz-kin was kidnapped and tortured by a "mainland powerful department".

- (Oriental Daily) August 15, 2017, According to information, Martin Lee, Albert Ho and Lam Cheuk-ting did not notify the Central Committee before the press conference. Afterwards, one Central Committee member told the group that the party should be prepared for various contingencies. This was a rational analysis that caused certain long-standing party members to remind him sternly that fellow party members must always be trusted. But as more evidence (including the surveillance videos) surfaced, the Central Committee members were stunned. They called a meeting this morning to discuss their strategies. One person expressed skepticism about the credibility of Lam Tsz-kin and called for a rational analysis. But someone else said that they must always trust a party member who seeks their help. Due to the inability to reach consensus, the Central Committee decided not to severe themselves from Lam Tsz-kin. Instead they will wait until Lam is released before re-convening.

- (Oriental Daily) August 19, 2017. Previously Emily Lau declined to comment on the grounds that she did not know Lam Tsz-kin well and that she had not attended the press conference. Today, she admitted that the Lam Tsz-kin affair is a crisis for the Democratic Party. She said that Albert Ho genuinely believed Lam Tsz-kin at the press conference. Since then, certain facts that Albert Ho hadn't known about have emerged. Eventually the Democratic Party will have to give an honest account to the people.

Does Emily Lau believe in Lam Tsz-kin? She said that while the police investigation is still going on, it is meaningless to talk about whether she believes in him or not. She looks for a fair and just police investigation.


- Democratic Party Facebook

Summary: 22 pro-democracy legislators write to Secretary for Security John Lee Ka-chiu to demand a meeting as soon as possible to discuss mainland agents crossing the border to commit crimes. They cited first the case of Poon Wai-hei being kidnapped and imprisoned in 2013 and then the case of Lee Bo and now the case of Lam Tsz-kin. All these cases showed that mainland agents come to Hong Kong to carry out missions, kidnapping Hong Kong citizens and even using torture. "We cannot tolerate this situation. The Lam Tsz-kin affair is not an isolated incident. Therefore we demand that you and representatives of the Hong Kong Police to meet with us as quickly as possible to discuss whether the Hong Kong Police can effectively protect the safety of the citizens of Hong Kong when mainland agents come to Hong Kong to carry out their missions." Signed: Lam Cheuk-ting, Wu Chi-wai, Andrew Wan, Helena Wong, Roy Kwong, Hui Chi-fung, James To, Alvin Yeung, Jeremy Tam, Tanya Chan, Kwok Ka-ki, Chan Chi-chuen, Leung Yiu-chung, Leung Kai-cheung, Charles Mok, Siu Ka-chun, Lee Kwok-lun, Eddie Chu, Fernando Cheung, Claudia Mo, Dennis Kwok, Yip Kin-yuen.

- After the FactWire released their videos, these 22 legislators are not pressing for this meeting anymore.

- (Civic Party legislator Alvin Yeung's Facebook) August 11, 2017. "Democratic Party member Lam Tsz-kin appears to have been kidnapped by four to five mainland law enforcement agents in the middle of bustling Mong Kok, detained, assaulted, tortured and even "given some stapled crosses" on his thighs because Lam is Christian. They also told him: "This is a state affair; it is useless for you to tell the police." At a time when there is turmoil over mainland law in Hong Kong under the co-location arrangement for the High Speed Rail, a mainland department has come out and showed us how to enforce the law across the border. After Hong Kong cedes land to the Express Rail Link to enforce mainland laws, will these cases be more frequently? Will Hong Kong still be Hong Kong?"

- (Joshua Wong's Facebook)

Democratic Party's Lam Tsz-kin appeared to have been kidnapped by mainland powerful department agents and tortured. He was imprisoned and his highs were stapled in cross shapes. I was just interviewed live on BBC and I express my strong condemnation of this type of brutal torture.

Using this global live broadcast, I re-emphasized that nobody should receive violent treatment no matter what his political stance is. The concern of the people of Hong Kong for Mr. Liu Xiaobo will be vanish just because of the violence.

In the past, there have been many instances in which mainland powerful departments have kidnapped dissidents in Hong Kong. I am very worried that as such cross-border crimes become more common, the people of Hong Kong will be worried and One Country Two Systems will be severely damaged.

The people of Hong Kong must unite together to defend our basic rights in the face of the intrusion of the Chinese government against democracy and human rights in Hong Kong.

- (Oriental Daily) August 15, 2017. Previously Lam Tsz-kin told the media that he listened to his wife to bathe and then soak his clothes and shoes in water, thus destroying any physical evidence. Lam Tsz-kin was arrested early this morning. This morning at 8am and 11am, our reporter went to knock on the door of the Lam home in the company of security guards. Nobody answered. So his wife may be staying elsewhere to avoid the storm.

- Mrs. Lam is an eyewitness to a crime. So she was probably down at the police station assisting in the investigation.

- Co-location Concern Group Facebook

Another cross-border torture!
Lam Wing-kee/Lam Tsz-kin
They are the best reasons for opposing Co-location

Last year Causeway Bay Books owner Lam Wing-kee was taken by a "powerful department" back to mainland China and incarcerated. Today Democratic Party Lam Tsz-kin revealed that suspected national security personnel illegally kidnapped him and even tortured him by stapling his thighs.

Even before Co-location is implemented, the situation is already so grim. Once the Chinese Public Security Bureau comes to West Kowloon to enforce mainland laws, who knows how many more shocking acts of oppression and persecution will take place in Hong Kong ...

Opposing Co-location begins by signing your name:

- (Ming Pao) August 16, 2017. Civic Party chairman Alan Leong said that the Democratic Party had the right attitude. He said that forming a conclusion at this time is to disrespect the police who have more information than the Democratic Party. As an outsider, Leong said that he cannot tell what should the normal or appropriate response be, but he thinks that the Democratic Party can have its own judgment.

- Yes, he wants to drop a rock on top of the Democratic Party which is stuck in the bottom of the well.

- (HKG Pao) August 16, 2017. Western media coverage -- they won't even run a follow-up, much less a correction.

The New York Times Hong Kong Democracy Activist Says He Was Stapled by Chinese Agents
NY Daily News Hong Kong activist says Chinese tortured him for Messi photo
New Jersey Herald Hong Kong activist says Chinese tortured him for Messi photo
USA News Hong Kong activist says Chinese agent drove staples into his legs over message to footballer lionel messi
Remezcla Hong Kong Dissident Claims He Was Tortured After Requesting a Signed Photo of Lionel Messi
Reuters Hong Kong democracy activist says he was stapled by Chinese agents
BBC Hong Kong activist abducted by Chinese agents
Mirror Horrific injuries of activist kidnapped and tortured by Chinese agents with stapler then dumped on beach
The Guardian Hong Kong activist says he was stapled over Lionel Messi photo
Business Insider UK A Hong Kong pro-democracy supporter says he was abducted by Chinese agents
Daily Mail Hong Kong democracy activist is STAPLED 21 times by Chinese agents for giving a signed Lionel Messi photo to dissidents widow
Belfast Telegraph Hong Kong activist says Chinese tortured him for Messi photo
Radio Free Asia Hong Kong Democracy Party Member Abducted, Tortured
Taipei Times HK politician says stapled by Chinese agents
Nikkei Asian Review Beijings hand suspected in kidnapping of Hong Kong democrat
Aljazeera Hong Kong politician stapled by Chinese agents
Asia Times HK activist kidnapped, warned against Liu Xia contact
Borneo Bulletin HK pro-democracy supporter says abducted by agents
Christians in Pakistan Hong Kong police investigate Protestant politician claim he was kidnapped and tortured by mainland China agents
UCAnews Hong Kong Protestant tortured for showing concern for Liu Xia
The Star Online Hong Kong activist claims Chinese agents attacked him
Stuff Hong Kong activist says Chinese tortured him for Lionel Messi photo
SBS Howard Lam is stapled 21 times by Chinese agents for giving a signed Lionel Messi photo to dissidents widow
The Sydney Morning Herald Hong Kong democrat Howard Lam arrested for misleading police after abduction claims

- (Bastille Post) August 15, 2017.

... Why did so many senior leaders of the Democratic Party join the party with Lam Tsz-kin? At the press conference last Friday, Lam Tsz-kin was accompanied by party founding chairman and Senior Counsel Martin Lee, ex-party chairman and solicitor Albert Ho and current legislative councilor and former ICAC investigator Lam Cheuk-ting?

Even this morning after Lam Tsz-kin has been arrested and the surveillance videos were published, Albert Ho still continued to support Lam Tsz-kin. Ho said that he called Lam who told that he was not the person in the videos. So Ho is still raising questions about identification. He said that if Lam Tsz-kin wanted to elude surveillance, wouldn't he have changed his clothes?

Ever since the story came to light on Friday, Internet users have raised many, many doubts. But the senior leaders of the Democratic Party chose to believe Lam Tsz-kin and they ended up with a disaster on hand. In communication theory, these people are guilty of selective exposure.

People have their own biases. They tend to seek out things that are consistent with those biases for the sake of reinforcement. This is called confirmation bias. Lam Tsz-kin said that members from a mainland powerful department kidnapped and tortured him. Since Martin Lee and Albert Ho have believed that "the Communist Party is evil" and "it is like this on mainland" over all these years, they accepted what Lam said in spite of the numerous inconsistencies and improbabilities.

- (Oriental Daily) August 15, 2017. Did another person dress up as Lam Tsz-kin in order to frame him? Indeed Albert Ho insisted that the FactWire videos are not conclusive. There is no doubt that the person in the first video is Lam Tsz-kin. The time was 5:41pm. Lam was walking down Portland Street in the direction of Pitt Street. He wore black clothes, dark blue shorts, sneakers with black top and white bottom, dark-colored wristwatch on the left hand, wearing a black backpack with a pocket on the left shoulder strap. He also walked in pigeon toe style. In the second video which was taken 2 minutes later at the intersection of Portland Street and Pitt Street, the man was now seen wearing a cap and sunglasses. As he got near the surveillance camera, he also put on a white surgical mask. This man had the same physique, clothes, shorts, sneakers, wristwatch, backpack and even pigeon toe walking style.

The remaining videos showed this man walking towards Pitt Street, crossing Portland Street, switching back towards Hamilton Street and finally leaving towards Nathan Road. He was on his own, and there was no sign of any suspicious kidnappers.

- Who do you trust? Lam Tsz-kin or your own lyin' eyes?

- (The Stand News) The problem with the FactWire videos is that they assume that the individual who began to show up in and after the second video must be Lam Tsz-kin. This person wore a baseball cap and a surgical mask. He may have looked like Lam in clothing and physique. I cannot see his face, so I cannot be sure if this was a body double.

Lam Tsz-kin said that he was kidnapped in the section between Hamilton Road and Pitt Street. This is somewhere between the first and third videos. The first video confirmed that he was on Hamilton Street. But there are 50 meters of space between the first and second videos. There are no surveillance cameras in that section. What happened there? Is the person who showed up in the second video a body double? We must pay attention to this when we discuss the videos.

- Lam Kay's Facebook

Even if Lam Tsz-kin is eventually proven to have lied, FactWire has still committed a "very bold" supposition.

That is to say, there is no direct evidence between the first and second cameras to prove that the two individuals are the same person. Although this is highly likely, this is still not direct evidence. Yet FactWire wrote: "The closed circuit television saw Lam Tsz-kin leave Portland Street safely." Even if the clothes are the same, this is not proof that he "departed safely"? Where is the evidence. This is especially so when the accusation is directed against the victim of a crime and not some government or organization.

Therefore they must choose more neutral worlds. It is unnecessary to lose public trust over this.

- (HKG Pao) After FactWire posted the surveillance videos, Lingnan University Cultural Studies assistant professor and InMediaHK founder Ip Iam-chung described the FactWire report as "character assassination of Lam Tsz-kin. Ex-legislator Albert Cheng told FactWire to investigate the pro-establishment camp and not the pan-democratic camp.

In the past, FactWire had conducted many negative stories about Hong Kong and Chinese government as well as public companies. But as soon as they turned to investigate the pan-democrats' scandal, the Yellow Ribbon glass hearts are broken, and their previous voices of praise immediately turned into curses.

In the view of the  Yellow Ribbons, criticisms of the establishment represent Freedom of the Press. However, the same type of criticisms must never be used for the pan-democrats themselves.

The new Hong Kong Journalists Association chariman Yeung Kin-hing did not come out to support FactWire. He said that FactWire was too quick to identify the man in the later videos as Lam Tsz-kin.

Based upon my understanding of the issue, FactWire had set out believing Lam Tsz-kin's story and they wanted to find the evidence to support that story. They asked the businesses for their surveillance videos hoping to find the scene when Lam was kidnapped by the "mainland powerful department" agents. Instead, they uncovered the lie which drew some vile reader comments.

What is FactWire supposed to think? First, they believed in Lam Tsz-kin and then they found the opposite. Secondly, they went ahead to publish their report thinking that the Yellow Ribbons respect the facts. Instead, they got a taste of Yellow Ribbon-style "freedom of the press."

- (Silent Majority for HK) So much for editorial independence, freedom of press and freedom of expression. FactWire has changed the title of its report to "Closed circuit television saw Lam Tsz-kin on Portland Street; afterwards a man with similar clothes and walking style left while wearing a hat and covering his face." In the report, the text became "When the man walked past the surveillance cameras, his face cannot be seen. However, his physique, clothes, black wristwatch on the left hand, the athletic shoes, the backpack and the pigeon-toed walking style are very similar to that of the Lam Tsz-kin recorded before."

- Various businesses gave their surveillance videos to FactWire. According to Guidance on CCTV Surveillance and Use of Drones,

On the use of personal data, DPP3 stipulates that personal data shall only be used for the purposes for which it was collected or a directly related purpose. Unless the data subject gives prescribed consent (which means express consent given voluntarily) or if any applicable exemptions under the Ordinance apply, personal data should not be used for a new purpose.

When a data user (e.g. building management company) is asked to provide copies of CCTV records to a law enforcement agency (e.g. the police) for criminal investigation purpose, the exemption provided under section 58(2) of the Ordinance7 may apply. The data user, however, is under no general obligation to supply the personal data as requested. Before the exemption is invoked, the data user must be reasonably satisfied that failure to supply the data would likely prejudice the investigation.

So Lam Tsz-kin should sue those businesses for violating his data personal privacy.

- The people's right to know the truth supersedes any stupid law that protects criminals. This comes from the Media Bible according to Jimmy Lai.

- The Hong Kong Police Facebook has a public service announcement: Always keep a safe distance between vehicles and allow for a two-second stop.

- Explanation: On the Hong Kong Internet, there is a saying about "following the vehicle ahead too closely and getting caught in an accident." This is an alert not to jump in with bold comments on an incident when the facts are still not known. For the Hong Kong Police to post this public service announcement at this particular time is, of course, dark humor.

- If you denounce the Hong Kong Police for engaging in politics, then you are following the vehicle ahead too closely.

More from the Hong Kong Police Facebook about what a crime victim should do (1) call the police at 999; (2) go to the hospital if injured; (3) don't wash your clothes; (4) jot down the important details such as locations, suspects, vehicle data, etc.

- Derivative Art for the Hong Kong Correctional Services:
All officers on duty should be careful to remove the following objects in case some stupid dick uses them on himself and blame you for it!
--- LAN cable wires
--- Bed sheets
--- Staplers
--- ... and all other objects (because who knows what they can do!)
At most, you can leave them two filet-of-fish burgers.

- (The Stand News) August 15, 2017.

Let us suppose that Lam Tsz-kin made up the whole thing (for whatever reason). Two things won't change:

(1) There is a genuine risk that Chinese law enforcement agents or their surrogates will carry on their business of arresting people here. This is not reduced just because Lam Tsz-kin lied.

(2) Co-location is ceding land to enforce mainland laws, and this will make cross-border law enforcement even easier.

The high efficiency of the Hong Kong Police in solving this case points out several things:

(i) the closed circuit television coverage in Hong Kong is very high
(ii) the Hong Kong Police is very efficient in gathering evidence (if they want to)
(iii) the Hong Kong Police will strike back if you file a false complaint with them

In the case of Lam Wing-kee, he claimed to have been escorted back to Hong Kong by mainland law enforcement agents but he decided to contact Albert Ho for help. He made a police report. Based upon what happened in the Lam Tsz-kin case, there must have been plenty of surveillance videos of Lam Wing-kee in Hong Kong. But that case is unsolved after more than one year. Nobody is saying that Lam Wing-kee was lying, no closed circuit videos have been released and Lam Wing-kee has not been charged with filing a false report. You should know what the differential treatment means.

- McDonald's was the biggest winner in the Lam Tsz-kin. Here is a man who was drugged, tied up, assaulted and stapled 21 times. He was dumped on a rocky beach in the middle of the night. What does he do when he came to? He flagged down a taxi to take him to a McDonald's where he ate two filet-o-fish burgers. I bet you didn't know that filet-o-fish burgers work as pain-killers!

Headline Daily featured the FactWire videos as their front page headline story. On the same page, McDonald's is offering two hamburgers for $10 today for Hongkongers to celebrate. This can't just be a coincidence, right?

Derivative art: Lam Tsz-kin as spokesperson for McDonald's filet-o-fish.

- Derivative Video Art to the tune of Jingle Bells.

- Derivative Art: the stapler is the most powerful of the top ten weapons deployed by the "powerful department"

- Derivative Art: Kim Il Jong has immediately ordered the mass production of the latest breakthrough in weapons of mass destruction:

- Derivative Art: Democratic Party flyer for a day trip

Director/actor: Lam Tsz-kin
Mong Kok -> Sai Kung day trip
A meticulously designed mysterious tour to explore the secrets of the relationship among geography, human nature and patriotism.
Date: August 10, 2017
Time: 4pm
Assemble in Yau Ma Ti -> Pick up by special mystery vehicle -> Sai Kung Beach -> Return home on your home in the early hours -> Must hold press conference
Reward: Two filet-o-fish burgers at the end

- The Shum Tsai Kee noodle restaurant provided their surveillance videos to the police and the media. In so doing, they are cooperating with the Chinese Communist regimes in Hong Kong and mainland China. Shum Tsai Kee had better worry about being harassed by pro-democracy activists.

- I firmly believe that videos of the masked man was staged by the police the next day with an actor. Shum Tsai Kee's original surveillance video did not contain any sign of him. Shum Tsai Kee colluded with the police to take the fabricated video the next day and provided the recording to FactWire. Brother Shum will go to jail for fabricating evidence.

- Derivative Art: The mainland powerful department has achieved a scientific breakthrough in replicant technology.

Top panel: "I am innocent. That wasn't me!"
Bottom left panel: Needle marks showing that DNA had been extracted
Bottom right panel: A failed replicant along the way

- This was clearly a case of religious persecution: Lam Tsz-kin said that they stapled him in the shape of crosses because he is a Christian. He said that he intends to attend Yale University in September to obtain a doctorate in theology under the Croatian theologian Miroslav Volk. He has even purchased the airplane ticket already. He is also known to speak on behalf of the Falun in support of the 43 million brave people who have resigned from the Chinese Communist Party:

- (SCMP) August 17, 2017. Kowloon City Court rejected Democratic Party member Howard Lam Tsz-kins request to be allowed to travel to the United States later this month to study theology at Yale University. Lams lawyer said the activist had been admitted in April to study at Yale under prominent Croatian theologian Miroslav Volf, and had booked a flight to leave Hong Kong on August 27. He argued against the travel ban, promising the court Lam would return to Hong Kong to attend his trial. But Principal Magistrate Peter Law Tak-chuen disagreed. Lam was ordered to hand over his travel documents and report to the police station regularly.

- (Oriental Daily) August 24, 2017. Our newspaper has obtained a copy of a letter from Martin Lee to the US Consulate General and the Yale University School of Theology dated June 2, 2017. In the letter, Martin Lee will provide financial support for Lam Tsz-kin while he studies at the Yale University School of Theology from Fall this year to Spring this year. The financial aid included living expenses as well as tuition fees. The letter included Lam's Yale University student ID number.

- (HKG Pao) August 25, 2017. Who is paying for the tuition/transportation/living expenses of these "students"?

(1) Lam Tsz-kin
Background: Democratic Party member; principal player in Stapler Gate.
Economic status: Unemployed
Education achievement: Chinese University of Hong Kong Divinity School of Chung Chi College PhD student
Enrolment institution: Yale Divinity School, Yale University, USA
Tuition: According to Yale University, PhD students at other institutions can apply to study for one year or one semester. The tuition fee is USD 1500 per semester. One year would be HKD 23,400.
Living expenses: According to the Yale University, the expected living expenses (rent, food, personal, books) are USD 17,369 or HKD 133,608 per year.
Transportation: About HKD $40,000.

(2) Alex Chow
Background: Hong Kong Federation of Students former secretary-general; sentenced to 7 months in prison for the takeover of the east wing of Government Headquarters.
Economic status: His parents are worth HKD 100 million
Academic achievement: Hong Kong University graduate (after six years)
Enrolment institution: London School of Economics to study for a master degree in urban planning/social sciences.
Tuition: According to the London School of Economics, overseas students pay 26,448 pounds (HKD 266,770) in tuition for 2017-2018.
Living expenses: According to the London School of Economics, students should expect to have 1,100 pounds to 1,300 pounds per month to cover living expenses. 15,600 pounds per year is HKD 157,351
Transportation: Airplane ticket is abut HKD 10,000.
Did his parent pay for him? We don't know.

(3) Edward Leung
Background: Hong Kong Indigenous spokesperson, disqualified from entering the 2016 Legco elections for advocating Hong Kong independence, charged with rioting with trial to begin in January 2018.
Economic status: Ordinary; unemployed, but his lifestyle is very middle-class
Academic achievement: Hong Kong University bachelor degree in philosophy (after five years)
Enrolment institution: Studied for the GCSE in Canada; spent six months at Harvard University as researcher beginning January 2017
Tuition: Not information on researchers; but a two-year-masters degree will cost USD 40,000 to USD 60,000 (HKD 312,800 to HKD 469,200).
Living expenses: According to Harvard University, Asian students will need to spend about USD 22,000 to cover rent, transportation and personal expenses. Two years would cost USD 44,000 (HKD 344,080).
Transportation: Round trip airplane ticket costs about HKD 7,000.
No job, lousy grades, but he gets to go to Harvard all the same.

(4) Ray Wong
Background: Hong Kong Indigenous convener, charged as mastermind of the Mong Kok riot, arrested with HKD 530,000 in cash and 100 Viagra pills.
Economic status: Middle-class family, claim to be a freelance interior decorator
Academic achievement: Drop out of Caritas Bianchi College of Careers
Enrolment institution: Oxford University diploma course (two-year-course in philosophy) beginning October 2016
Tuition: According to news reports, it was 1,680 pounds in 2016-2017 and 1,750 pounds in 2017-2018. The total is 3,500 pounds (HKD 35,303).
Living expenses: 800 pounds per month, or 19,200 pounds per year (HKD 193,662).
Transportation: Round trip airplane ticket HKD 18,000.

(5) Billy Fung Jing-en
Background: Hong Kong University former president; found guilty of disrupting public order when he led the siege on the HKU Council members.
Economic status: Impoverished
Academic achievement: Not bad
Enrolment institution: National Taiwan University Political Studies Institute masters degree
Tuition: According to the National Taiwan University, the tuition plus other feeds amount to NT$ 76,360 per semester, or NT$ 305,440 (HKD 78,722) in total
Living expenses: NT$84,000 to NT$113,000 per semester, or NT$452,000 (HKD 116,494) in total
Transportation: Round trip airplane tickets about HKD $4,000.
[Why does he choose Taiwan over UK/USA? Was it because he knows that his English sucks (based upon television interviews)?]

- (Headline Daily) By Chris Wat Wing-yin. August 15, 2017.

On the night before yesterday, the TVB serial drama <Legal Maverick> included a story of the blind hero being stabbed several times and left on a Sai Kung beach. This was supposed to be a nerve-racking development, but I cannot help but giggle when I remembered the stapled guy also found on this Sai Kung beach.

The last few days have been very exciting on the Internet. We were getting so many derivative art spoofs. But these were only coming from the pro-establishment camp. Meanwhile the Yellow Ribbon media, the umbrella soldiers and the pro-independence camp were quieter than a library. Whereas James To, Alan Leong, Tanya Chan and Claudia Mo used to pounce out at the drop of a hat, they were in total hiding now.

Yellow Ribbon media such as Apple Daily, Ming Pao, RTHK, Stand News, HK01 ... used to hype up on every minor issue day and night, but now they are giving the story of the stapled guy the cold  treatment. Even more amazing is the fact that nobody organized a demonstration march and/or fundraising campaign this Sunday in support of the stapled guy. This is definitely not Yellow Ribbon style.

Even more astonishing was the reaction of the stapled guy himself. At the press conference, he was running ahead in the full steam and thinking that he will become the next Lam Wing-kee with his photo appearing in an MTR ad as the new God of Democracy. But things are turning out like what happened at the Park n Shop incident that he led against the real property hegemony. At first, he thought that it would be cool; instead the critical opinion against him was unanimous. So after the many self-contradictions that emerged, our stapled guy hid at home and uploaded a video in which he proclaimed himself to be a "coward."

This "coward" supposedly said that he had a headache and/or stomach ache and refused to go down to the police station to give his statement. Instead, he went on a RTHK radio program to courageously answer questions. Having placed media exposure over rule-of-law, the shaky brand of the Democratic Party has been buried by this courageous coward.

- (EJ Insight) Is Howard Lam lying through his teeth? By SC Yeung. August 15, 2017.

The case of the alleged abduction of Democratic Party member Howard Lam has failed to draw the same public attention as the case of Causeway Bay Bookstores Li Bo early last year.

Does it mean that Hong Kong people dont feel much concerned about the latest incident of supposed mainland law enforcement in our territory, or is it that they simply dont buy the pro-democracy activists tale?

Lam links his alleged abduction and torture to his plan to send an autographed photo of Argentine football star Lionel Messi to Liu Xiaobos widow Liu Xia, but his narrative, from the time he said he was abducted in Yau Ma Tei on Thursday to the time he found himself on a beach in Sai Kung on Friday, raises more questions than answers.

Why mainland agents would seize, drug and torture him for a photo of a soccer star, or even for trying to contact the widow of the Nobel Peace Prize laureate, is hard to fathom.

Such a puzzle has enabled the pro-Beijing camp to cast doubts on Lams allegations and accuse him of fabricating the story to throw mud at Beijings reputation and raise fears among the public about the dangers of the co-location arrangement for the Express Rail Link.

Lam, the supposed victim, has quickly turned into a villain. With the public opinion going against him, Lam turned his resentment to the Hong Kong police, and accused the force of trying to discredit him by being selective in disclosing information about the case.

Before the Hong Kong public make their own judgement on the case, they should carefully evaluate the facts.

Accoding to Lam, the incident happened at around 4 p.m. on Thursday, shortly after he bought a football shirt from a shop in Yau Ma Tei. He said he was on his way to the MTR station on Pitt Street when he was snatched and drugged by two Putonghua-speaking men, whom he suspected of being Chinese national security officers.

However, CCTV footage seen by FactWire news agency on Monday afternoon appears to belie Lams story. The video clips appear to show him wearing a cap, sunglasses and a face mask, alone and apparently unharmed, as he was walking from Portland Street at around 5 p.m. on Thursday, or an hour after he was supposed to have been abducted. No suspicious-looking persons were seen near him during the three-minute walk.

Hours after the FactWire report was published, police arrested Lam on Tuesday morning on suspicion of misleading them about his kidnapping claims.

Police said Lams story does not match the findings of their investigation. Thus, they suspect the Democratic Party member was providing false information to mislead the police.

The question, however, is, why did the police immediately conclude that Lam fabricated his story and arrested him right away?

Why did the police immediately conclude that the man on the CCTV footage was actually Lam? Did they review the CCTV footage or just relied on FactWires report? Police did not explain exactly how Lam misled the police. And if Lam was lying, did he injure himself by applying a stapler to his legs?

No doubt, the CCTV footage is creating doubts on the credibility of Lam and even his esteemed colleagues at the Democratic Party, including founder Martin Lee and former chairman Albert Ho, who helped him in bringing out the matter to the public via a press conference last Friday.

Ho has been quoted as saying that he still believes Lams allegations and that the CCTV footage may not be telling the whole story.

But as far as the public is concerned, the entire party is now under the shadow and may be a willing party to a conspiracy of disinformation and perjury.

This could give the pro-establishment camp an opportunity to accuse the opposition of misleading the public on cross-border law enforcement.

The government of Carrie Lam should remain neutral on the issue until the police finally decide whether to file charges against Lam, or if new evidence surfaces to support his allegations.

- Lam Tsz-kin was reported to have boarded from Mong Kok to Sai Kung that night. This movie poster is a spool on the movie <The Midnight After>, which has a long Chinese title of <Early morning that night, I boarded the red van from Mong Kok to Tai Po>. This latest re-make is titled <That afternoon, Mr. Lam boarded the red van from Mong Kok to Sai Kung>.

- If taking a minibus means being kidnapped by a "mainland powerful department", then I get kidnapped every day by a "mainland powerful department."

- We have photographic proof that Lam Tsz-kin was taken away against his will by two Chinese putonghua-speaking "powerful department" agents.

By the way, the two men are Hong Kong Police officers who took Lam Tsz-kin back to this home at Kam Huan House, Kam Fung Estate, Ma On Shan district to search for evidence. Indeed, the Hong Kong Police is a "powerful department" and their officers speak putonghua to some degree.

- Damn it! I was having so much fun watching the 'pro-democracy camp' digging ever deeper holes for themselves. But suddenly FactWire came around and burst the bubble. Damn it! If they had waited one more week, we would have seen entertaining scenes such as

- (HKG Pao) August 15, 2017.

According to a person familiar with police procedures, the police would normally gather more evidence if they suspect that Lam Tsz-kin filed a false police report and delay the arrest until later. But once FactWire published their videos, the police had to move immediately because their suspect may begin to destroy the evidence (clothes, shoes, baseball cap, sunglasses, backpack, Octopus card, etc).

- (iCable) August 16, 2017. When the police took Lam Tsz-kin home, they found and took away several mobile phone, a laptop, a computer, a pair of sunglasses and a cap.

- The police planted the evidence there. Of course.

- FactWire has limited resources, so they concentrated on the scene of the alleged kidnapping (MTR exit A1). The police had mobilized 300 person-shifts on this investigation already, so they already knew that Lam Tsz-kin had taken the minibus to Sai Kung. On August 13 (Sunday), the police were already canvassing the Sai Kung businesses and obtaining their surveillance videos. The media were not aware of this development yet.

- (Silent Majority HK) August 15, 2017.

On August 11 (Friday), the day of the Democratic Party press conference, HK01 carried 25 reports. The treatment began to cool down gradually. By yesterday there were only 3 reports. But after Lam Tsz-kin got arrested, HK01 rebooted in earnest. By 530pm this afternoon, they already have 13 reports for the day. Furthermore, they have renamed their series from <The kidnapping of Lam Tsz-kin> to the <The arrest of Lam Tsz-kin>. At a time when Stand News is still fighting the lost battle, HK01 is turning directions and still leading the pack.

Publication August 11 August 12 August 13 August 14 August 15
HK01 25 8 3 3 13
Apple Daily NA 9 8 2 2
Ming Pao NA 9 3 2 3
The Stand News 8 4 3 4 12
HKG Pao 3 7 9 10 8
Silent Majority HK 2 9 6 8 7
Speakout HK 2 1 4 9 14

- (EJ Insight) Worrying questions surround the Howard Lam saga. By Stephen Vines. August 18, 2017.

Democratic Party member Howard Lams claims of having been abducted and tortured by mainland officials appear shakier by the day but subsequent police action and his arrest for misleading the police also raise a great number of worrying questions.

First, how come the police have devoted such enormous resources to investigating Lam for a crime that hardly rates as being among the most serious?

Secondly, how come the police, who are usually very tight-lipped about the arrest of suspects, have suddenly sprung leaks in every part of their enquiry?

Indeed, when a staggering total of some 50 officers were mobilized to search a Sai Kung beach for evidence in connection with Mr. Lams charge, the media were there in full force to record their every action.

Thirdly, how come the police, who have yet to reveal the findings of their investigation of the five Causeway Bay booksellers two years ago, have moved so rapidly and conclusively in this case?

The same question surrounds police action following the abduction of businessman Xiao Jianhua from the Four Seasons Hotel in Central. This investigation has been shrouded in total secrecy, assuming that is that any serious investigation was ever made.

Mr. Lam has yet to be proven guilty of the charges laid so the possibility remains that his story is true. However, if it is not, why did he produce such a lurid tale when there was a high possibility of the truth being uncovered?

Who benefits from raising allegations of this kind and then having them so publicly demolished?

Given that it is hardly difficult to find real and disturbing evidence of mainland official meddling in Hong Kong, why make up a story, unless the aim of so doing was to discredit genuine accusations of meddling?

Of course, another explanation of all this runs on the lines of the cock-up theory of history a very useful tool for analyzing why things happen. This theory holds that stupidity, mistakes and unintended actions produce remarkable outcomes. This may well explain whats happening here.

Meanwhile, the usual suspects are wetting themselves in glee over this affair, rushing to proclaim that it signifies the death of credibility for the democrats. They sagely nod their heads and even pretend to be somewhat saddened that the days of democrat popularity are now over.

Strangely, however, these same people who have reached this conclusion had absolutely nothing to say earlier in the month when a prominent rural leader, government supporter and District Councilor, Tang Lai-tung, was arrested during a widespread anti-Triad operation involving a range of criminal activity.

It seems that when pro-government personalities wander across the line of integrity this does not reflect badly on the pro-government camp as a whole.

Cynics will say, well, thats politics for you, and indeed it is so. People do stupid things, politicians are often first in line when it comes to stupidity and yes, it is a dirty old business.

However, what is most disturbing here is not the actions of politicians but of the police force who appears to be increasingly used for political ends and whose reputation for integrity is greatly undermined as a result.

- (SCMP) Its now for the court of public opinion to judge the pan-dems. By Alex Lo. August 16, 2017.

Now that Democratic Party member Howard Lam Tsz-kin has been arrested for making false statements about his alleged abduction and torture by mainland agents, its a case for the legal authorities.

But those grandaddies of the pan-democratic movement who have been directly responsible for creating this media circus must be held accountable in the court of public opinion.

Against all common sense and simple decency, Martin Lee Chu-ming, Albert Ho Chun-yan, Lee Cheuk-yan and others organised a press conference and put Lam in front of the cameras instead of alerting the police. At the very least, they could have obtained more reliable information from Lam before going public. Lee, SC, who is at the very top of the barristers list in terms of seniority, later complained that Lam was foolish and legally ignorant for not preserving evidence of his ordeal because he had washed his clothes and bag.

The irresponsibility and amateurism of such veteran politicians simply defies belief; their motives can only be guessed at. Its not lost on people that the incident comes at a time when pan-democrats and localist radicals have been agitating for the public to oppose a plan to put mainland customs and immigration officers inside the West Kowloon high-speed rail terminus. Yet, despite wild exaggerations and fearmongering about the end of one country two systems and rogue agents detaining travellers in the heart of the city, their campaign has so far failed to gain traction.

Lams claims, if true, would have been a godsend and helped to turn public opinion. Localists such as Joshua Wong Chi-fung of the political group Demosisto have been quick to draw such a connection about the dangers of co-locating mainland officers in West Kowloon. Before Lams arrest, no less than 21 opposition lawmakers wrote to security secretary John Lee Ka-chiu to demand a meeting and complain about the official handing of the case. Clearly, they were hoping to squeeze as much mileage out of the incident as possible and raise public suspicion against the central and Hong Kong governments.

Margaret Ng Ngoi-yee, who had warned that people should be afraid of even walking near the future West Kowloon terminus if co-location went ahead, rightly said the fight against it was a fight over public opinion. But thanks to the furore over Lam, opposition politicians now learn that public opinion can be a double-edged sword.

- (SCMP) Hong Kong pan-democrats dig themselves into deep hole over Howard Lam kidnap claim. By Michael Chugani. August 15, 2017.

There I was, minding my own business in Mong Kok, a district teeming with mainland tourists, sex workers and shady bars when Putonghua-speaking goons shoved me into a vehicle in broad daylight and took me to goodness knows where.

When I came to, I had been stripped down to my underpants. My abductors taunted me about not loving the motherland, then punched staples into my thighs. Does that pass as torture? The terrorists holed up at Guantanamo will know.

Hours later, I found myself fully clothed lying on a beach in pitch darkness. Was I even in Hong Kong? My muddied backpack containing my switched-off mobile was next to me. I didnt think of switching it on to check where I was or to call for help. Instead, I felt hunger pangs. That can be more painful than 21 staples punched into thighs.

Even though it was dark I somehow knew I was in Sai Kung. I stumbled upon a road where a passing taxi took me back to civilisation. I downed two buns. Forget the staples, food comes first. Then I went home. My mother moaned about my clothes and backpack stinking of seawater. Instead of preserving them as evidence I soaked them. Then I had a nice shower, staples still in thighs.

Refreshed, I called my mates who persuaded my family that I should call a press conference to show off my bruised thighs before calling the cops.

When I heard Democratic Party member Howard Lam Tsz-kin tell his tale on Chinese-language radio stations accompanied by party colleagues, I sensed his story smelt fishier than his clothes.

Evidence collected so far has led police to conclude Lams story is full of holes. But the biggest hole is the one the opposition has dug for itself. In its haste to embrace Lams story as definitive proof Beijing thinks nothing of trampling on us, the opposition has also exposed its obsession to smear the Communist Party whenever it can.

If it turns out Lam told a tall tale, I cant see how the opposition can extricate itself from the hole of its own making without a tarnished reputation. It used Lams alleged abduction to stoke fear against having mainland officials at the West Kowloon express railway terminus.

That strategy is now in the same hole as the opposition. The loyalists must be smirking with glee.

- (SCMP) Are Hong Kongs pan-democrats finished? Staplegate is a sign of the times. By Yonden Lhatoo. August 17, 2017.

Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedy, a wise man once wrote.

Is that the story of Hong Kongs pan-democrats?

There used to be a time when they were seen as a meaningful opposition force to counter some of the shoeshiners, sycophants and rubber stampers in the pro-establishment camp that has always dominated the citys legislature. Not any more.

Not only are they becoming more irrelevant and ineffectual by the day, they seem to be plumbing new depths of political farce and buffoonery. Just look at the circus that has been dubbed Staplegate.

Im talking about the way they handled the case of Democratic Party member Howard Lam Tsz-kin, who shocked the city with his sensational story about being kidnapped and tortured by mainland agents operating outside their jurisdiction.

Lam claimed he was snatched by Putonghua-speaking men from a busy street in broad daylight, bundled into a van and taken to an unknown location where they punched staples into his legs before dumping him on a beach last week.

It was, according to him, punishment for planning to send a signed photograph of soccer star Lionel Messi to the wife of the late mainland dissident, Liu Xiaobo.

Lam has been charged with misleading police after his story unravelled during their investigation and the case is now in court, so the less said about it, the better, until a judge determines whether he made it all up.

What is definitely worth talking about is how it has left the pan-democrats with egg on their faces and their credibility in tatters.

They threw common sense and caution to the wind in their eagerness to maximise the political mileage they saw in Lams story, starting with the Democratic Party holding a press conference to parade him staples and all in front of the media cameras before even reporting the case to police.

The luminaries of the pan-democratic leadership, including heavyweight lawyers, were quick to jump to conclusions about a further erosion of Hong Kongs autonomy and a death knell for the one country, two systems policy.

Some of them made quantum leaps into ludicrous conspiracy theories, linking Lams case to the co-location controversy.

Thats the other ongoing political circus over plans to set up a joint immigration and customs checkpoint at the West Kowloon terminus for the high-speed rail link to Guangzhou.

While this sort of arrangement is perfectly normal the world over when it comes to facilitating cross-border travel, the mere thought of their mainland compatriots exercising any sort of jurisdiction on the Hong Kong side, even in a closed zone officially leased to them, unhinges our doughty pan-democrats.

Their ranks in the Legislative Council have been decimated by the disqualification of colleagues who mangled or distorted their lawmakers oaths and have only themselves to blame for misguided political grandstanding.

Instead of strategising to regain lost ground and win back the vacant seats through impending by-elections, theyre busy crying wolf and complaining about Communist Party monsters under their beds.

People are tired of the same old narrative and negativity. Just look at the dwindling turnouts at pro-democracy rallies that once used to draw massive crowds.

We need a credible and competent opposition camp in Hong Kong, to keep a check on the government and its cronies. Not this hysterical bunch stapling themselves in the foot.

- (Ming Pao) Editorial : Pro-democracy figures must act responsibly. August 17, 2017.

THE CASE of the alleged abduction of Howard Lam (a Democrat) has taken an abrupt turn. The accuser has become an accused and got arrested on suspicion of misleading police officers. The Democratic Party's credibility is now faced with blows. Democratic-Party and Civic-Party legislators have reacted cautiously, saying that they hope the whole truth will come out soon and that it is inadvisable now to come to any conclusion. Their attitude is totally different from that some pro-democracy figures adopted when the affair first came to light. Those people could not wait to allege people belonging to "forceful agencies" of the mainland had crossed the border to kidnap a man unlawfully. They even dragged checkpoint co-location in. The case, which has to do with whether any person has falsely reported an instance of false imprisonment with a view to panicking society, is of great significance. The police ought to look into it impartially.

The way the case has unfolded shows the Democratic Party may have made a grievous political mistake when it came to its judgement. For that it may have to pay a hefty political price. How some pan-democratic legislators have conduct themselves is not commendable either. Seeing a fellow member's body covered with staples, Democrats may not have been as calm as they should have been. They may therefore have failed to make well-judged moves. That is perhaps understandable. However, some pro-democracy legislators hastened to link the affair to checkpoint co-location, saying, "It isn't democrats that have caused fear, but fear has proved real.... None of the three steps towards checkpoint co-location should ever be taken." Clearly, they have played the matter up politically and seized the opportunity to fan the flames.

In relation to Lam's arrest, Civic-Party legislator Tanya Chan has said her statement that the case corroborated the fact that citizens' worry of checkpoint co-location was not exaggerated was made on the basis of the information she then had, adding it is inadvisable to come to any conclusion at the present stage. However, some legislators have just told the electronic media they will not make any comments for the time being. Legislators ought to act responsibly. Those who vigorously capitalised on the affair then and dodge and hedge now can hardly be called frank and open-hearted. If it is established that Lam has made a false report, those legislators must give the public an explanation must not just mention it casually as if nothing had happened. The Lam case arose when the co-location public-opinion battle went on. The pan-democrats are unlikely to win the legality battle, and they are at a disadvantage in the public-opinion battle. If Lam is found to have made a false report, the pan-democrats' credibility will inevitably be damaged, and it will be even harder for them to win the public-opinion battle.

Lam has been arrested for making a false report. It rests with the police to find out whether the case has to do with a ruse of self-injury or only with persecutory delusion. It is unfair to hazard any unfounded judgement. However, if any person who is against checkpoint co-location does what may harm "one country, two systems" and cause society to panic, one may call him more than malicious and so unscrupulous as to stop at nothing. Any person may pursue what he thinks just. However, chaos will certainly reign in the world if all believe that, to do so, one may use fair means or foul, resort to violence and tell lies. Linked together, unscrupulousness, double standards and "I embodying justice" form a "trinity of rashness in action". A person troubled with it does not distinguish between good and evil or between right and wrong. As he thinks he is justice itself and justice will not be done unless he prevails, he may go to any lengths to achieve his objective. The horrible "trinity" may cause people to take leave of their senses, glibly use sophistries and push society towards danger. Such people must be closely watched out for.

- (Hong Kong Free Press) August 16, 2017. While undergoing police questioning on Tuesday night, Lam reportedly told the officer on duty that he was experiencing acid reflux and headaches at 11:44pm, according to Ming Pao. He asked to see a doctor, and the authorities immediately arranged for him to be sent to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in an ambulance.

- The police can detain him for 48 hours without charge. He was unresponsive during the questioning. By faking illness, he stalls for more hours. Soon the time will be up and he can walk free and go to study theology at Yale University at the end of the month.

- (am730) By Lee Wah-ming. August 18, 2017.

In this hot summer, the story broke last Thursday about Democratic Party member Lam Tsz-kin claiming to be kidnapped and tortured. For the entire week, the newspapers were filled with reports and commentaries about the case. On Tuesday, the story reached another climax when the police arrested Lam and charged him with filing a false police report. This will surely be one of the top 10 news stories of the year.

Lam Tsz-kin and I are founding members of the Democratic Party. He is with the Kowloon West branch and I am with the Kowloon East branch. So we don't know each other well. My impression was that Lam is a righteous and emotional person. In recent months, Lam has not been involved in party politics as he concentrated on the Christian circle. So I have even less contact with him.

After the elders of the Democratic Party called the press conference with him, I have carefully considered this incident. Until he was arrested I was still unsure, because the case was so incredible with so many question marks.

First of all, Lam said that the two putonghua-speaking kidnappers told him not to send a Messi autograph picture to Liu Xiaobo's wife Liu Xia. I don't understand why a football star's picture should be so sensitive and damaging such that members of the "powerful department" were sent out to cross the border to kidnap/assault someone. The target person was not taken back to mainland China. These people could not possibly think that Lam would not report to the police and make the incident public.

Besides, Lam Tsz-kin is not a well-known Democratic Party member. What kind of damage can he do to the Central Government? I find it hard to believe that the Central Government would injure someone without having a response plan. And if this is true, then what purpose does it serve to the Central Government? The public reaction can only be 100% negative, such that Hongkongers will fear the Communist more, oppose China more and increase support for self-determination/independence. How stupid can this be?

At this time, we can only wait for the results of the police investigation ... I went back to review the August 11 newspaper reports on the Democratic Party press conference. I have my reservations about the backdrop containing the words: "Strongly condemn the powerful department for imprisoning, assaulting and threatening." This showed that they believed 100% in Lam's one-sided story. Even though I am a Democratic Party member, I cannot agree. If Lam turns out to be a liar, the reputation of the Democratic Party will drop to the nadir. I worry about that.

- (The Stand News) August 21, 2017. I see three possibilities:

(I) Lam Tsz-kin is telling the truth. In the first video, the man was Lam Tsz-kin. In the following videos, the masked man was a different man. Lam misstated the time and location but that is just a minor mistake. Just because there was no video of the act of the kidnapping does not mean that it did not take place. It was Lam Tsz-kin's personal choice to wash his clothes and take a bath. The Democratic Party elders were the ones who told him to hold a press conference first before going to the police. The police arrested him on false pretenses.

(II) Lam Tsz-kin suffers from bipolar disorder. Sometimes he is manic and sometimes he is depressed. He scripted the whole incident. We should be sympathetic towards mental patience. He was just driven by his mania to construct a story and make up the details. Lam Tsz-kin denies that he is lying, but no mental patient ever believe that they are ill.

(III) Lam Tsz-kin is a Communist Party mole, and the whole plot was concocted to discredit the Democratic Party and the Hong Kong pro-democracy movement as a whole.

My opinion is that (II) and (III) are more likely than (I). My judgment is based mainly on the FactWire videos, which showed that the maskless man and the masked man have the same walking style. And (III) is more likely than (II), but I cannot come to a definitive conclusion as yet.

- (Speakout HK) August 21, 2017. I see three possibilities:

(I) The whole affair was scripted and played by Lam Tsz-kin who wants to famous overnight. Some pan-democrats say that they believe in him. But I have seen the video from six years ago in which he led a bunch of angry young men to paralyze the property hegemon's supermarket for one hour. If he can glee over that kind of activity, then he is perfectly capable of play-acting this incident.

(II) He was "stapled" by certain individuals but he cannot divulge their true identities (triad gangsters? loan sharks?).

(III) He has a psychological problem. A friend told me about the Munchausen syndrome: a factitious disorder wherein those affected feign disease, illness, or psychological trauma to draw attention, sympathy, or reassurance to themselves.

I don't know which possibility is more likely, but the facts seemed to have exclude the possibility that he was not lying.

- (Oriental Daily with video) August 28, 2017.

Lam Tsz-kin was required to report to the police on schedule. This evening Lam and his wife went to the Ma On Shan Police Station. During the process, the masked Mrs. Lam rammed her right shoulder against our reporter, yelling "Don't film anymore!" before leaving.

- Well, somebody just assaulted a reporter. Where is the Journalists Association? Or are they hiding as usual?

- (Wen Wei Po) November 23, 2017.

Lam Tsz-kin posted on Facebook that those who smear him will be struck down by God. He said that legal fees are expensive and he simply cannot afford it. He said that if he could not get the lawyer on duty to represent him, then he will have to either represent himself or else X himself. When that time comes, we already know why.

Well, at the press party organized by the Democratic Party, there was solicitor Albert Ho and Senior Counsel Martin Lee standing by his side. Why are they in hiding now?

Later Lam re-emerged in a more peaceful demeanor. He said that that his Senior Counsel "is very good, basically working on a volunteer basis." He said that he spoke to two to three law offices and found them to be very expensive. "I don't understand why they say that they provide the service for free, and then they turn around to ask for money."

Meanwhile, the Internet users are trying to fill in the blank for the phrase "X himself." Fuck? Soil? Kill? Hang? Shoot? Castrate? ... But the best answer is obviously "Staple"!

(InMediaHK @YouTube) June 13, 2014 at the Legislative Council
(InMediaHK @ YouTube) June 13, 2014 at the Legislative Council

The Court of Appeal of the High Court CAAR 3/2016: Secretary of Justice v. Leung Hiu-yeung and others

We hold that:

(1)   In committing the offence, the respondents and the other participants of the unlawful assembly charged at the LegCo Complex with violence.  Their conduct was a large scale disruption seriously damaging public order and safety.   Under the applicable sentencing principles, the court must impose a deterrent sentence.  Immediate imprisonment is plainly the only sentencing option.  The trial magistrate erred in law and principle when he made community service orders against the respondents.

(2)   Charging at the LegCo Complex with violence makes the case more serious and is an aggravating factor.  When participants of an assembly at the LegCo Square use or threaten to use violence in the course of promoting their cause or expressing their view, they harm the integrity of the LegCo as the symbol of public opinion.  They also impede the rights of others who assemble peacefully in promoting their cause and expressing their view in the same place at the same time.  In extreme cases, physical confrontation between different camps may arise, leading to serious consequences.  In sentencing those offenders, the court must safeguard the integrity of the LegCo, protect the rights of those assembling peacefully and lawfully at the LegCo Square and prevent the re-occurrence of violent incidents in an assembly at the LegCo Square.  Thus, the court has to give more weight to deterrence in sentencing.  The court must impose on the respondents a sentence which sufficiently deters them from re-offending and others from imitating their seriously unlawful act of charging at the LegCo with violence.

(3)   The respondents cannot say that they were convicted and sentenced for exercising their rights to assembly, demonstration or expression, or expressing their opposition to the North-East Development Project.  They were so convicted and sentenced because they trespassed on the boundary laid down by the law for peaceful assembly by charging at the LegCo Complex with seriously unlawful and violent means.

(4)   Nor can the respondents say that the sentence of immediate imprisonment imposed on them by the court will suppress the exercise of their rights to the freedom of demonstration, assembly or expression in accordance with law.  As long as they conduct themselves within the boundary laid down by the law, the law will fully and sufficiently protect their freedom of demonstration, assembly and expression.  However, once they trespass on the legal boundary and commit an offence, they immediately lose the legal protection.  When the law sanctions them, the law does not suppress them or deprive them of their rights because the law has never allowed them to exercise such rights by unlawful means in the first place.

(5)   The respondents say that they had not used any violence, and what they had used was only force or aggressive means because their purpose was to make their opposition to the funding of the North-East Development Project heard at the meeting of the Finance Committee.  The respondents assertion is simply not tenable because whether their conduct constituted violence is to be determined objectively by reference to their conduct at the time without reference to their subjective view or the purpose of their conduct.

(6)   Some respondents stress that they committed the offence because of civil disobedience.  In the present case, this assertion is not a mitigating factor because the respondents conduct of charging at the LegCo with violence is inconsistent with the spirit of civil disobedience as described in the relevant authority.  Rather, their conduct is a serious disruption damaging public order and safety with violence in total disregard of the law.

(SCMP) August 15, 2017.

Thirteen Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters convicted of unlawful assembly were jailed for between eight and 13 months on Tuesday after prosecutors launched a successful bid to obtain a harsher punishment from the court.

The 13, part of a wider group who in 2014 stormed the Legislative Council over a controversial government development project, were originally given community service by a lower court in 2015.

In sentencing, Magistrate Jason Wan Siu-man had taken into account that the activists had held a noble cause of speaking up for the ignored when they took part in the protest on June 13, 2014 against the development project in Hong Kongs northeastern New Territories. Critics said the project would leave people homeless.

But the prosecutors returned to the Court of Appeal on Monday in a session to review the sentence, arguing that their crime was serious because the group had teamed up with others to storm the legislature despite being aware of a police presence. They asked the court to jail the 13 as a deterrent.

A panel of three justices Court of Appeal vice-president Wally Yeung Chun-kuen and Justices of Appeal Derek Pang Wai-cheong and Jeremy Poon Shiu-chor on Tuesday agreed with the prosecutors, saying that community service was manifestly inadequate.

Sentencing young defendants with an aspiration is not something the court is happy to do, the judges said. But they said there was a need to hand down a deterrent sentence for the sake of social order.

During the proceedings, which lasted a day and half a morning, the protesters were allowed to observe from the public gallery. But they were told to enter the dock just minutes before the judges handed down their ruling.

The 13 are: Leung Hiu-yeung, Lau Kwok-leung, Leung Wing-lai, Ivan Lam Long-yin, Chu Wai-chung, Ho Kit-wang, Wong Kan-yuen, Kole Chow Koot-yin, Yim Man-wa, Billy Chiu Hin-chung, Kwok Yiu-cheong, Chan Pak-shan, and Raphael Wong Ho-ming, vice-chairman of League of Social Democrats.

All were sentenced to 13 months in jail except Wong Kan-yuen, who will serve eight months because he pleaded guilty.

Prosecutors failed to locate Chiu for the hearin