Nine of Hong Kong’s main pro-democracy advocates have been sentenced to jail terms Friday for organizing a march through the 2019 anti-government protests that triggered an amazing crackdown from Beijing.
Those sentenced embody the town’s so-called “father of democracy” Martin Lee in addition to pro-democracy media tycoon Jimmy Lai.
They have been discovered responsible earlier this month of organizing and collaborating in a large protest in August 2019, the place an estimated 1.7 million individuals marched in opposition to a invoice that will have allowed suspects to be extradited to mainland China for trial. The protest was not licensed by the police.
Their convictions and sentencing have been the newest blow to the town’s flagging democracy motion, amid an ongoing crackdown by Beijing and Hong Kong authorities on dissent within the semi-autonomous Chinese metropolis.
Lee, an 82-year-old lawyer and former lawmaker identified for his advocacy of human rights and democracy within the metropolis, had his sentence of 11 months in jail suspended after his age was considered.
Lai, the founding father of Hong Kong’s Apple Daily tabloid, was sentenced to 12 months in jail. Prior to sentencing, he was remanded in jail on different fees, together with collusion with international forces to intervene within the metropolis’s affairs — a brand new crime below a nationwide safety legislation imposed on the town in 2020 by the central authorities in Beijing.
Lee Cheuk-yan, a pro-democracy activist and former lawmaker identified for serving to to prepare annual candlelight vigils in Hong Kong on the anniversary of the bloody crackdown on pro-democracy protests in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square in 1989, was sentenced to 12 months in jail.
Lawyers Albert Ho and Margaret Ng each had their 12-month jail sentences suspended. Former lawmaker Leung Kwok-hung was sentenced to 18 months, whereas one other former legislator, Cyd Ho, was given a jail sentence of eight months.
Two different former lawmakers, Au Nok-hin and Leung Yiu-chung, who beforehand pleaded responsible have been additionally given jail sentences. Au was sentenced to 10 months in jail, whereas Leung’s eight-month jail time period was suspended.