The case against the grandmother accused of assisting the overstay of a 12-year-old mainland boy without identification papers continued at Sha Tin Magistrates’ Court today, with the defence requesting an adjournment of three weeks so as to allow Chow to help settle the boy in Shenzhen.

Chow Siu-shuen, 67, appeared in court on charges of helping her grandson breach his conditions of stay set by the Immigration Department from 2006 to 2015. The mainland boy, Siu Yau-wai, dubbed “Wai Jai” by local media, lived undocumented in Hong Kong for nine years.

12-year-old overstay mainland boy and grandmother
Siu and his grandmother.

The prosecution said that the defence could make a reply regarding the charge at this stage, but counsel for the defence said that he needed further instructions from Chow. The court decided that the case will be postponed till October 5. Chow was released on bail of HK$500 and allowed to leave Hong Kong in the meantime.

chow grandmother wai jai

The overstay was revealed in May at a press conference organised by Chan Yuen-han of the Federation of Trade Unions. Siu, whose parents allegedly abandoned him, was brought from the mainland to Hong Kong by Chow on a two-way permit, which he overstayed. Neither Siu nor his parents are from Hong Kong, so he had no right to stay in Hong Kong. Chan Yuen-han came under fire for assisting Siu, with protesters demonstrating outside Chan’s Wong Tai Sin offices, criticising Chan for damaging the rule of law and demanding the immediate deportation of Siu.

Siu was voluntarily deported back to the mainland in June. Confusion ensued as to whose idea this was, and whether anyone had agreed to take care of him on arrival. Later, Chan told local media that everything had been Chow’s idea and that she had nothing to do with any of the decisions, Apple Daily reported.

Karen cheung hong kong

Karen is a journalist and writer covering politics and legal affairs in Hong Kong for HKFP. She has also written features on human rights, public space, regional legal developments, social and grassroots activism, and arts & culture. She is a BA and LLB graduate from the University of Hong Kong.