The Eastern Magistrates Court has confiscated pro-democracy activist Avery Ng’s HK$500 bail payment after he arrived an hour late to his trial for allegedly assaulting Hong Kong’s former leader.

The chairperson of the League of Social Democrats was charged with common assault this February, after throwing what he called a “smelly fish sandwich” at former chief executive Leung Chun-ying on the morning of last year’s legislative elections on September 4.

Avery Ng. File photo: Elson Tong/HKFP.

Ng’s trial was scheduled to begin at 9am on Wednesday. However, his defence counsel Douglas Kwok complained of gastroenteritis and dizziness and could not attend the proceedings, reported RTHK.

Ng arrived at court around 10am. A duty lawyer told the magistrate that Ng’s alarm failed to ring and he was stuck in traffic.

Magistrate So Wai-tak said Ng should have understood the importance of arriving on time, given that he has attended many court proceedings in the past. So decided to confiscate Ng’s current HK$500 bail payment, and ordered him to pay an additional HK$1,000 in bail.

Ng must attend court again on Thursday morning, where a new court date will be decided for his trial.

Avery Ng at the Golden Bauhinia protest before Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Hong Kong. Photo: HKFP/Catherine Lai.

Leung Chun-ying, who stepped down as chief executive at the end of June, was scheduled to appear in court as a witness on Thursday, reported Apple Daily.

“I guess there’s no choice but to meet Leung Chun-ying in court on another day,” wrote Ng on Facebook.

Elson Tong

Elson Tong is a graduate of international relations and former investigations consultant. He has also written for Stand News.