Civic Party lawmaker Tanya Chan, one of the nine activists convicted by a court for public nuisance over the 2014 Umbrella Movement protests, has claimed that she was followed by suspected plainclothed police officers during a court break on Wednesday.

District Court judge Johnny Chan was hearing mitigation statements from the nine defendants. He ordered a recess during the morning to allow time for the prosecution to respond.

Tanya Chan said that, during the break, a man wearing a black t-shirt – with yellow labels – followed her as she was speaking with her friends.

Tanya Chan. Photo: Kris Cheng/HKFP.

Chan told reporters that she waited for the man to walk past her and followed him instead. She said she then saw the man speaking with suspected plainclothed police officers.

She added that, although she was convicted, she did not understand why the man needed to follow her and her friends: “This is groundless, it is absurd, this is a humiliation to all of us.”

Chan angrily urged those who instructed the suspected police officers to follow her to stop.

“It’s absolutely not acceptable in Hong Kong… Why do you treat us like this? No way – so I hope this won’t happen again,” she said. “If you don’t have necessary or possible grounds to believe that we are going to abscond – stop it, no way, I can’t accept it.”

Photo: Kris Cheng/HKFP.

She said she has taken photos of the man.

Sentences for the activists will be handed on April 24. If Chan’s sentence is longer than a month, other lawmakers can propose a motion to strip her of her seat at the legislature. However, the pro-Beijing camp does not have the necessary two-thirds majority in the legislature to oust her.

Chan did not read out her mitigation statement in court on Wednesday. The statement her team submitted to the court said: “I was born and raised in Hong Kong. I feel honored and fortunate to have worked and contributed myself to Hong Kong in my own position. What I received was good enough to use in my lifetime; what I paid was not worth mentioning. I have lived my life without regrets nor resentments, but only infinite gratitudes.”

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Kris Cheng

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.