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  • Sep 23, 2014
  • Updated: 9:49am
July 1 march
NewsHong Kong

Police accused of heavy-handed treatment of protesters arrested after July 1 march

Student federation official says decision to haul away more than 500 protesters in Central was wrong as they had said they would leave at 8am

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 02 July, 2014, 2:08pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 03 July, 2014, 11:17am

Police have been accused of using excessive force in Central to drag 511 protesters from an overnight sit-in that followed the July 1 democracy march.

Officers are also said to have deprived those arrested of their rights during the action.

The mass arrests were made early yesterday on Chater Road and outside the chief executive's office in Admiralty.

The Hong Kong Federation of Students, organiser of the Chater Road sit-in, said it was unnecessary for the police to haul protesters away by force, as the federation had promised to end the protest at 8am.

"The action was a success. It has opened the way for more civil disobedience," deputy secretary- general Chan Shu-fai said.

He said the alleged maltreatment of protesters had laid bare the police's lack of manpower and the force's lack of ability to handle larger scale civil disobedience actions.

Chan and other student leaders were arrested for unlawful assembly and for aiding and assisting an unlawful assembly.

Eric Lam Lap-chi, a Kwai Tsing district councillor, said officers grabbed him by the neck and twisted his wrists as they dragged him away at about 3am, leaving him with scratches and bruises.

By 10.30pm yesterday, all of those detained were released with 25 given bail and 486 given warnings.

None of those arrested had been charged so far, police said.

Protesters said they were made to wait hours at a temporary detention centre in Aberdeen before they were granted access to lawyers and were given refreshments.

Barrister and lawmaker Alan Leong Kah-kit said five lawyers entered the centre at a police college at Wong Chuk Hang at 4am and met 11 protesters two hours later.

When another nine lawyers went in at 8am, they had to wait five hours to meet protesters.

"They didn't respect the rights of the accused to see the lawyers as soon as possible," said Leong, who went to the centre much later.

"The police's treatment of the lawyers is problematic."

Legislator Helena Wong Pik-wan, a member of the Independent Police Complaints Council, said some of the arrested were not allowed to visit the toilet as they were told there were not enough officers to escort them.

But Secretary for Security Lai Tung-kwok denied any maltreatment of the protesters.

He said the police had followed normal procedures, but it took time to process such a large number of arrests.

Lai said it was necessary for police to make the arrests as the protesters had blocked major roads and disrupted order.

Inside the police college, Qing Lam, 30, spoke to a South China Morning Post reporter over the phone after 1pm.

Qing, who was arrested at Chater Road, later said she was still waiting to give a statement five hours after that phone call.

The centre appeared to be overwhelmed with protesters, she said, but police did not supply food or water until noon - over three hours after her arrest.

Hong Kong police arrest hundreds of demonstrators at Chater Rd sit-in

Additional reporting by Tony Cheung and Samuel Chan



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This article is now closed to comments

Can someone please tell me why there is no report of Joshua Wong being arrested?
These stupid and ignorant protesters are all following the instructions of HK's biggest IDIOT Benny Tai and helping him gain all the notorious fame but without doing none of the dirty work.
Wake up you stupid protesting fools!..............Benny Tai is just using and playing on your ignorance for his own 20 minutes of fame.
Dumb indeed. Don't know why there are so many mindless drones who act out the wishes of these schitstarters. Good thing Benny didn't start a religious cult.
There's a saying in Chinese that "A smart person speaks out whilst the dumb ones acts out". Clearly Benny Tai and his cohorts were not present in Central whilst the those students present acted out, against the law, and were arrested.
Perhaps BT was enjoying a comfortable night in his cosy bed? To give him credit, he did lend support in Aberdeen when the sun came out, and when he would not be committing any crime.....
Great job overall by the police. Very good. If you are warned you are illegally occupying an area, don't leave voluntarily, you will be forcefully removed and you asked for it - sorry! Saying you'll stay to 8am isn't a legally recognised permit to avoid being arrested! What a load of BS!
"Three hours without food and water" after being arrested - my heart bleeds, not.
Seriously, if this is all these people can find to complain about, the police have done an outstanding job.
The editor should be fired. So were the police - who are being accused of heavy-handed treatment of the protesters - arrested; or is the police being accused of heavy-handed treatment of the protesters who were arrested? Oh wait, now I get it! This is the same kind of rhetoric that is being used by Beijing to define the universal suffrage they are going to give to Hong Kong.
The protestors do not even know what they are protesting about. How is not having a full universal suffrage today impacting their lives? If we had universal suffrage today in HK would they be richer? Have bigger Homes? Be happier? Better quality of life?
People protesting for something need to have a reason behind it. Some injustice that is measurable. The fact is HK has cheap public housing, good Medicare compared with the rest of the world and free education. It is not that bad a place to live.
Tourists from China has nothing to do with universal suffrage?
Most of the people doing civil disobedience are young students who have nothing better to do during their holiday which is what occupy central is actually based on. They do not even realize that receiving warnings from the police could impact them 5 years from now as the next incidence will take into account previous warnings.
The police seem reasonable and the only news here is whining students who already decided to whine before anything even happened. They had already planned to hold onto each other, to call out badge numbers and already planned what they would yell to make people think police were abusing them. I feel sorry for the police who have to do their job with such people who are just wasting their summer. They should get jobs, take summer school, take up a hobby... not just waste away their lives.
If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything.
I think this about sums up everything these students are doing. Jumping around from issue to issue, even when there was no reason to protest in the first place.
The reasons for their protest of the HKTV decision is still beyond me. The new Territories housing issue...the money requested was for exploring and feasibility studies only, no one was going to lose their homes in the near future.
You are standing for anything, not something!
They just want something to crusade against. Maybe they take inspiration from the Star Wars movie or something. Oh and maybe they can't find girlfriends.




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