My Take

Hong Kong woman convicted of assaulting police officer with her breast deserves to be jailed

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 04 August, 2015, 1:13am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 04 August, 2015, 8:40am

A breast is, of course, not a weapon. And nowhere in the conviction and sentencing of anti-parallel trading protester Ng Lai-ying does it say it is.

So the pro-breast rally on Sunday which attracted about 200 protesters - both men and women - wearing bras in support of Ng against the sentencing magistrate had me scratching my head.

I am glad, though, that the rally gave an opportunity for cross-dressers and transvestites to come out in support of a political cause.

The chatter on internet forums frequented by activists has been full of outrage and anger.

The proximate cause was that Ng was jailed for three-and-a-half months for assaulting a police officer with her breast, pending an appeal, while anti-Occupy newspaper vendor Yiu Yau-pik was ordered yesterday by a judge to perform 120 hours of community service for throwing an egg at lawmaker "Long Hair" Leung Kwok-hung.

Where is the justice, many asked?

One angry post said Yiu's was the more serious of the offences, and if anyone deserved to go to jail, it's not Ng but Yiu. After all, the post went on, the egg did stain Leung's T-shirt while no officers were harmed by Ng's breasts.

I would rather ask: where's the injustice? 120 hours of community service for the common assault of throwing an egg? That's a pretty stiff penalty, just one notch short of being sent to jail in Hong Kong's sentencing guidelines.

Our pan-democratic lawmakers pioneered and perfected the protest art of throwing objects at opponents in and out of the legislative chamber. Leung simply got a taste of his own medicine.

Assault legally means the application of an unlawful force, which does not have to cause physical injury. The latter offence is assault causing bodily harm and there are the more serious offences of wounding and wounding with intent.

Ng was found guilty of assaulting a police officer, which usually comes with a jail sentence. She did so by pressing her chest against the officer's arm, and, as the presiding magistrate observed, falsely shouted indecent assault against him, thus further provoking the protesting crowd around her.

She got what she deserved.