Legislator 'Long Hair' Leung Kwok-hung receives 'lenient' fine

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 26 September, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 26 September, 2012, 4:33am

Radical lawmaker "Long Hair" Leung Kwok-hung received what he said was "a lot of leniency" yesterday when he was fined HK$1,500 for unlawful assembly.

If Magistrate Don So Man-lung had imposed a jail term of more than one month it would have opened the recently re-elected legislator to the possibility of a second impeachment motion against him in the space of six months.

Leung admitted not getting police permission before holding a demonstration in Central after the July 1 march last year. He and five other activists pleaded guilty to charges related to an unlawful assembly immediately after the authorised march. All received the same penalty.

Delivering the judgment in Kwun Tong Court, So called it "minor guilt" given the demonstration took place on a weekend evening in a commercial, not a residential, district.

Further, So said the heavy police presence meant the demonstrators could be kept in good order. "There were obviously enough police at the scene - there were 'mountains and seas' of them," So said, citing a Chinese idiom.

Leung said the prosecution was politically motivated.

"[So] might think that some [provisions] of the Public Order Ordinance constituted a violation of human rights of Hong Kong citizens," Leung said outside court. "That's why he didn't put a heavy hand on us."

Leung and co-defendants Cheung Kam-hung, Chow Nok-hang, Leung Wing-lai, Hung Hiu-han and Shum Tse-kit, each pleaded guilty to two charges under the Public Order Ordinance relating to unlawful assembly.

Leung survived an impeachment motion in April after being handed a two-month jail sentence for joining a crowd that disrupted a forum on plans to scrap by-elections. Leung, who topped the polls in New Territories East, will appeal against that conviction at a hearing in November.