Schoolboy, 15, arrested after guide to storming Legco appears online
Teenager released on bail, computer and phone seized; instructions posted on forum were deleted after police request
A 15-year-old schoolboy who allegedly posted on the internet a guide to storming the Legislative Council building has been arrested, police said on Thursday.
He was picked up when officers raided his home in Mong Kok on Wednesday afternoon, according to police.
A police spokesman said the teenager was arrested on suspicion of inciting others to cause criminal damage and to assault police officers, and accessing a computer with criminal or dishonest intent.
He is also suspected of unlawful assembly and criminal damage after a police investigation allegedly revealed he was among the protesters who tried to enter the Legco building last Friday.
Officers from the commercial crime bureau seized from his home a computer and a mobile phone, as well as clothes that police say he wore last Friday.
The schoolboy, identified as a Form Three student, has been released on bail and is required to report back to police next month.
He is understood to be a former member of activist group Civic Passion and has taken part in various protests in the city, police said.
An initial investigation showed the guide – which included tips on how to break windows and avoid injury – was posted on the internet on Monday.
At the request of police, the details of the guide have been deleted from the online discussion forum where it was posted.
It came after protesters tried to pry open the doors to the Legco complex with bamboo poles and smashed glass panels last Friday. Police responded with pepper spray.
Protesters were attempting to prevent lawmakers from voting on the government’s request for HK$340 million in preliminary funds for a new-towns project in the northeastern New Territories.
The plans will involve the destruction of existing villages as well as green-belt land, and many villagers say they will be left homeless.
So far, police have arrested 25 people including the schoolboy in connection with the incident.
Five of those arrested say they were beaten by police in custody.
Police are still discussing with the Legco Secretariat security measures at the complex with more protests expected when lawmakers meet to discuss the funding again on Friday.
On Thursday morning, workers erected wooden boards to protect the glass windows of the Legco building and chained up barricades.
Outside the complex, holes were drilled to fix barricades in place and prevent protesters from using them to storm the building.
It is understood more than 1,000 officers will be deployed tomorrow to control protesters.