‘Indecent’ books and comic at Hong Kong Book Fair: 1,400 books seized and one publisher to be prosecuted
The Office of Film, Newspaper and Article Administration has confirmed prosecutions against one publisher and seized hundreds of other titles at the conclusion of the annual book fair, which attracted more than 1 million.
More than 1,400 books from 300 titles at this year’s Hong Kong Book Fair were seized by the publication watchdog for containing suspected indecent content.
A spokesman from the Office for Film, Newspaper and Article Administration said the items, mostly fiction, were suspected to be indecent articles under the Control of Obscene and Indecent Articles Ordinance.
The office will submit the seized articles to the Obscene Articles Tribunal for classification. It said it would take appropriate follow-up action in accordance with the classification.
The office also received a public complaint against a comic book for sale at the seven-day fair, which attracted more than a million visitors which ended on Tuesday. The comic book was submitted to the tribunal for classification and follow-up action.
A spokesman from the event’s organiser the Hong Kong Trade Development Council declined to comment on comic book in question.
He said the exhibitors were responsible for ensuring the items they displayed and sold complied with event regulations, which only allowed Class I articles that were neither obscene nor indecent. The organiser of the event did not assess all the titles prior to the fair.
Separately, the office said it would prosecute the publisher of two bestselling Chinese-language series Deep Web File and Deep Web 2.0 File for containing violent and sexual content, including a passage detailing cooking a little girl.
The maximum penalty for the publication of an obscene article is a fine of HK$1,000,000 and imprisonment for three years.
The maximum penalty for publishing an indecent article is a fine of HK$400,000 and imprisonment for 12 months on a first conviction, and a fine of HK$800,000 and imprisonment for 12 months on a second or subsequent conviction.