Amnesty urges better cross-border liaison

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 09 February, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 09 February, 2003, 12:00am

More than 25 Hong Kong residents have been prosecuted on the mainland in the past three years - some of them for crimes committed in the SAR - according to Amnesty International.

Amnesty director Bella Luk Po-chu said the families of those arrested often had no idea where they were because there was no system to notify the Hong Kong government of such arrests.

Amnesty was concerned that torture could be used to extract evidence on the mainland and the death penalty could be imposed. It is also worried that trials on the mainland may not meet international standards.

Hong Kong and the mainland have still not agreed on the transfer of suspects, despite years of talks.

Ms Luk urged the mainland and Hong Kong governments to set up a transparent and open procedure for such transfers. She said those arrested on the mainland should have access to family members, lawyers and a fair trial.

But Human Rights Monitor director Law Yuk-kai said there should be no negotiations on transfers unless there was a guarantee of a fair trial.

According to Amnesty figures, 26 Hong Kongers faced prosecution between 2000 and 2002 on the mainland. It is not known how many of these prosecutions were for crimes committed here.

According to the government, no mainlander suspected of crimes in Hong Kong has ever been handed over to Hong Kong to face justice locally.