Three men arrested for criminal damage following the emergence of localist graffiti messages in Kowloon have been released on bail, more than 24 hours after police detained them.
Localist group Hong Kong Indigenous has alleged that one of the men is a group member, while the other two were his father and younger brother.
Police told HKFP on Thursday that graffiti was found at three locations: Fa Yuen Street in Mong Kok, a footbridge on Mong Kok Road, and Ap Liu Street in Sham Shui Po.
The locations correlated with three pictures posted on Facebook page “Street Art Boy.” The since deactivated page showed public property spray-painted with the message “Hong Kong has fallen for 20 years.”
On Friday afternoon, Hong Kong Indigenous held a press conference outside Kowloon City Police Station. Spokesperson Ray Wong said that a member of the group was initially arrested on Thursday morning for criminal damage.
But he claimed that, by Thursday afternoon, the member’s father and younger brother had also been arrested.
Wong said he was told by lawyers that the police had searched the home of the Hong Kong Indigenous member, where they found spray painting tools.
Wong alleged that the police arrested the member’s father and younger brother because he refused to admit guilt.
Wong said that the group was able to get in contact with the member’s mother. “She is very emotionally unstable at the moment,” he said.
“She asked why they had to arrest her family members. She doesn’t understand what her son has done wrong so that the entire family has to be arrested together.”
“We call on Hongkongers to see how our law enforcement… has regressed away from civilisation. This is a feudal practice,” added Wong. “If this situation continues, what will Hong Kong become?”
The police told HKFP on Friday evening that all three of the arrested men have been released on bail, but must report to the police in late July.
“We are still investigating the case,” said a spokesperson. “The police do not rule out the possibility of further arrests.”