Hong Kong Politics & Protest

Two Hong Kong lawmakers to face charges over joint checkpoint protests at the legislature

Democratic Party lawmakers Lam Cheuk-ting and Andrew Wan said on Friday that they will be charged by police for protesting in a Legislative Council meeting in June.

The pair, who were involved in a protest in which two security guards were injured, said that they had been notified by the police about charges related to a protest on June 13.

Lam Cheuk-ting Andrew Wan Ted Hui

Lam Cheuk-ting (holding book) and Andrew Wan (in striped tie) Photo: Citizen News.

“This is the first time in Hong Kong’s legislative history that lawmakers have been prosecuted for peaceful protest against the president’s unfair judgments,” Lam said. “If this becomes a precedent – if we are convicted – lawmakers would only have the option of staying silent, or voluntarily leave the chamber, in the event of President Andrew Leung making ridiculous decisions.”

“This is a naked political prosecution,” he added. “The Hong Kong today is becoming less and less familiar, and more and more ridiculous, but we must fight back.”

He said they will try their best to defend their rights.

Lam and Wan will be charged with obstructing the legislature’s officers from performing their duties, while Wan will also be charged with an extra count of common assault.

Lam said they will have to appear at the Wan Chai police station on Monday for charging procedures.

Wan said they were only exercising their duties during the protest.

“I am certain that Andrew Leung’s decision was rude and ridiculous,” he said.

He said he found the common assault charge unreasonable as he had no intention or any actions to assault anyone.

The June 13 meeting had lawmakers debating the controversial joint checkpoint arrangement for the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link. Pro-democracy lawmakers were chanting slogans and obstructing officials from speaking by posing questions to the legislature’s president.

President Andrew Leung then ordered Lam and Wan to leave the chamber. They were removed by security guards, two of which were injured. One received blows to the ribs and the other incurred bruises. Lam and Wan also said they had been injured and were hospitalised.

The legislature’s secretariat then reported the case to the police. Police officers spent several hours taking evidence at the legislature’s chamber.

Andrew Wan Lam Cheuk-ting

Andrew Wan and Lam Cheuk-ting. Photo: Kris Cheng/HKFP.

In June, former lawmakers Baggio Leung and Yau Wai-ching and their three assistants were convicted of unlawful assembly inside the legislature as they tried to enter a meeting. They were blocked by security guards and some were injured. The five people were each sentenced to four weeks in jail.

Baggio Leung is on bail pending appeal. Others have given up their appeals and served their sentences.

In October, pro-democracy lawmaker Ted Hui was charged with three charges after he allegedly snatched the phone of an executive officer, who was tasked with keeping track of lawmakers’ whereabouts at the legislature. He denied all three charges and the case was postponed to December 17.

Lam said they have been summoned to appear at Wanchai police station on Monday.

HKFP has reached out to the police for comment.

Two Hong Kong lawmakers to face charges over joint checkpoint protests at the legislature