Hong Kong democracy activists walk free in appeal victory
Three of Hong Kong’s leading activists have won an appeal in the city’s highest court on Tuesday. The democracy activists were sentenced to jail previously but appealed to the high court. The city’s judiciary arm of government had come under fire as many groups and individuals had earlier claimed their rulings were as a result of pressure from Beijing.
Joshua Wong, Nathan Law, Alex Chow were sentence to jail in August 2017 for their roles in the 2014 Umbrella Movement mass pro-democracy protest. The government tightened its grip with stricter laws on protesters.
The proceedings of their trial resulted in the punishment of Wong, Law and Chow. Wong and Law were issued community service orders while Chow got a suspended sentence. Later on, the government dabbled into the matter and a jail sentence of between six to eight months was issued to them by an appeal court. Though the court accepted bail for them, it was not sufficient justice in their mind.
Chief justice Geoffrey Ma said Tuesday that the terms given to the trio were “significantly more severe” than the range previously handed down for unlawful assembly offenses.
He stated that the process of passing down the case was inappropriate.
Meanwhile, many have regarded the jail sentences given to activists has inappropriate and that it depicts the extent of Beijing’s influence in the semi autonomous city.
Hong Kong’s independence has been a major yearning of activists against the Chinese authorities an idea supported by Wong and Law.