Conflicts & War

Police detain Hong Kong activist over alleged weapons possession

Hong Kong, Dec 2 (efe-epa).- Hong Kong police arrested Wednesday the activist and acting president of the Baptist University Students Association Keith Fong, accused of obstructing justice, resisting arrest and weapons possession, the association said.

In a statement published on his Facebook social network profile, the source said police went to Fong’s home at about 07:00 am on Wednesday (23:00 GMT on Tuesday.)

Last year, in the context of pro-democracy protests that rocked the city, Fong was detained twice, and released both times without charge, according to local press.

Ho Chun-tung, police superintendent against Organized Crime and Triads, said at a press conference that Fong tried to escape Aug. 6 but was arrested by agents in the Sham Shui district, for alleged possession of 10 high-powered laser devices.

The student leader’s arrest came after he spent 4,200 Hong Kong dollars ($542) on the equipment, according to the indictment.

His arrest sparked several protests, including one in which protesters gathered to project laser beams on the dome of the Hong Kong Space Museum.

Laser pointers were routinely used at Hong Kong demonstrations last year, in many cases to obstruct the vision of riot control agents.

Baptist University Students Association demanded the immediate release of Fong, who will have to appear Dec. 8 in court.

Demonstrations against a controversial extradition bill and for an improvement in the democratic mechanisms of the semi-autonomous city became massive in June of last year.

At times, these left scenes of clashes between some radical individuals and Hong Kong security forces, and weighed down the local economy.

With the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic and sanitary measures, protests lost steam, especially since Jun. 30, when Beijing imposed a controversial national security law on the territory. This punishes infractions with life imprisonment for cases such as secession or collusion with foreign forces.

There have since been numerous police raids and arrests of activists, before which some of them have opted to go into exile to try to avoid reprisals for activities that, under the new legislation, could constitute a crime. EFE-EPA


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