24 March 2023

“It was like setting a time bomb...”

Three people who sold a book about Hong Kong’s 2019 pro-democracy protest movement have all been jailed. They were among six people arrested in January, and had been held in detention until their trials began on 17th March. The three pleaded guilty, and they were sentenced on 20th March. In his summing up, judge Peter Law said that the book could have reignited the protest movement: “It was like setting a time bomb”.

Free HK Media founder Alan Keung, who had promoted the book online, received an eight-month sentence. Alex Lee, the owner of the booth where it was sold, was sentenced to five months. Lee’s wife Cannis Chan, who edited the book, was sentenced to ten months.

The untitled 300-page book, featuring photographs of the protests, went on sale on Christmas Day last year at a Lunar New Year fair at Ginza Plaza. It was distributed by the Shame on You Grocery Store (影衰mi杂货店), and forty-three copies were seized by police, who described it as “a seditious book about a series of riots”. (400 copies had been printed by Copyman.)

In 2021, the publishers of the Sheep Village (羊村) series of children’s books about the protests were also arrested on sedition charges. They were sentenced to nineteen months in prison last year, and earlier this month two men were arrested merely for possessing the books.

0 comment(s):

Post a Comment