Hong Kong police arrest 11 for helping democracy activists: Local media
HONG KONG – Hong Kong local media reported on Thursday that the city police have arrested 11 people accused of assisting the group of 12 pro-democracy activists who were held while allegedly trying to escape to Taiwan by boat last year.
There are three women and eight men in the group which was arrested and they are aged between 18 and 72, said local broadcaster RTHK.
Among those held is lawyer Daniel Wong, who tried to help the 12 people detained in mainland China last August.
In a Facebook post, Wong said police came to his apartment at 6 am local time.
Police said they are still gleaning evidence.
In late December, a court in mainland China sentenced 10 of the 12 detainees to imprisonment ranging from seven months to three years for trying to cross the border illicitly. The case has drawn international attention and concern over the manner in which Chinese authorities are treating the group.
Two of them, who were minors at the time of arrest, have been brought to Hong Kong.
Families of the detainees said they were prevented from contacting independent lawyers and voiced suspicions that Hong Kong authorities abetted the arrests by Chinese officials.
Taiwan is a popular destination for Hong Kong pro-democracy activists ever since Beijing imposed the controversial national security law in June last year. Critics said the law is meant to stifle dissent and free speech in the city.