Four protesters who were charged with possessing offensive weapons at the Yuen Long protest on Saturday have been denied bail, after their cases were mentioned at court on Tuesday.
Those charged included Chu Chun-hoi, 18; Liu Hui-fung, 19; Chu Tsz-wan, 23; and Yung Wai-shing, 25. Their case appeared before the Fanling Magistrates’ Courts and they will be remanded until September 3 for a further court hearing.
The police had issued an objection to the protest in Yuen Long last Saturday, meaning participants were at risk of taking part in an unlawful assembly. The prosecution said that, when the four were arrested at around 10:40pm that day, they were wearing masks, eye shields and helmets, with one of them wearing a Captain America-style shield, reported Stand News.
They were found possessing weapons such as a retractable baton, a catapult, a multi-tool pocket knife, and an air gun, among other items.
The lawyer for Chu Chun-hoi, who had the air gun, said that its energy was lower than the legal limit of two joules. The lawyer said Chu intended to join a war game after work, but went to Yuen Long to help with first aid, after hearing cases of protesters being injured there. Chu’s defence argued that he did not intend to join the protest or attack anyone with the air gun.
The lawyer for Liu, who was arrested with the multi-tool pocket knife, said it was a common type of knife and the prosecution has no evidence to suggest that he was going to use the knife to cause any unlawful usage.
But Acting Principal Magistrate Don So said the four were carrying tools that could be used as weapons, and their intention to join the protests was “almost certain.” He said they could have used the weapons to attack others. Thus, So denied the bail application for all four as the case was serious and they could flee Hong Kong.
Social worker bailed.
Meanwhile, Lau Ka-tung, a social worker arrested for obstructing police officers, was granted bail of HK$2,000 on Tuesday.
The prosecution said that Lau had tried to block police from advancing in Yuen Long, claiming that he was fighting for extra time to allow protesters to leave the clearance zone, reported Stand News. They opposed Lau’s bail application, saying that he could commit similar crimes again, as there will be protests every weekend.
But magistrate So said his case was not among the most serious ones and thus allowed the bail application. He warned that bail could be cancelled if Lau commits the crime again.
A hearing was set for September 4.