A 50-year-old woman was arrested for allegedly taking photographs in a courtroom before a High Court trial on Thursday. She was later released pending police inquiries.

The woman, who according to the police held a Hong Kong identity card and spoke Cantonese, was attending a criminal trial in an 11th-floor courtroom at the High Court. A lawyer’s intern saw her raise her phone up to take a photo before the trial commenced.

high court
Photo: inmediahk.net.

The woman was detained as she tried to leave after the trial, and was subsequently arrested.

The police said they received a report from a staff member of the High Court and arrested the woman. She was released after a preliminary investigation.

Police said they will continue investigating and may issue a summons depending on the evidence.

The case is being handled by a criminal investigation team of the Central Police District Headquarters. Taking photographs in a court is an offence under  the Summary Offences Ordinance.

It is the fourth case of photo-taking in court in recent months.

Tang Lin-ling
Tang Lin-ling. Photo: Citizen News.

Earlier this month, 35-year-old mainland woman Tang Lin-ling was sentenced to seven days in prison for contempt of court and was ordered to pay HK$197,260 in legal fees. After her release from prison, she was deported back to the mainland.

Following recent incidents, the High Court plays audio clips in Cantonese, English and Mandarin before court hearings commence, to remind members of the public that photography is not allowed in courtrooms.

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.