A website has been launched promising cash rewards for anyone who provides information on “wanted” anti-government protesters.
The rewards range from HK$200,000 to HK$1 million for information on key protesters. The number one request listed on the website was for information on who removed a Chinese flag near the Tsim Sha Tsui Star Ferry terminal and threw it into the sea. The website said the incident on August 3 was what prompted the website’s launch.
According to a “WHOIS” search of the domain name, the website was registered on August 12 by a person named Leung Chun-ying – the same name as the former chief executive of Hong Kong. Leung posted an ad for the website on his personal Facebook page on Tuesday.
The website said: “We come from different sectors of society, and we hope Hong Kong can return to calmness as soon as possible. The rewards come from the public entirely and we will crowdfund in the future.”
The site invited visitors to provide information on 30 incidents that have taken place during the unrest of recent months, including occasions where protesters threw ink at the national emblem at Sai Wan’s China office and spray-painted the regional emblem at the Legislative Council. It also sought leads on the violent clashes at the airport and other locations.
It said the identities of those who call the hotline will be confidential and a professional team will follow up.
When an HKFP staffer called the number, an automated message invited the caller to leave their contact details.
According to the site, the reward will be paid – either in full or pro-rata – to anyone who provides information within a valid period, leading to the arrest and satisfactory prosecution of the culprits. “Satisfactory prosecution” meant that the arrested person is found to have a case to answer at the Magistrates’ Courts, District Court or Court of First Instance, the website stated.
On Tuesday, the Hong Kong police said that they have arrested 883 people since June, including 136 who have been prosecuted. 205 police officers have been injured since June, they said.
Large-scale peaceful protests against the ill-fated extradition bill have morphed into – sometimes violent – displays of dissent over Beijing’s encroachment. Demonstrators continue to demand a complete withdrawal of the controversial bill, a fully independent probe into police behaviour, amnesty for those arrested, universal suffrage and a halt to the characterisation of protests as “riots.”
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