Lawyer and District Councillor Daniel Wong Kwok-tung was released on bail from Sha Tin police station on Friday night following his arrest in connection with the Hong Kong 12.

Wong, along 10 others, were arrested early Thursday morning on suspicion of helping the 12 Hongkongers flee to Taiwan last August. He held in police custody for over 40 hours before being released on HK$10,000 bail. Police reserve the right to press charges later and he is required to report back to the police in March.

Daniel Wong Kwok-tung. Photo: Michael Ho/Studio Incendo.

The 71-year-old is known to have represented protesters in cases related to the 2019 anti-extradition law protests. He is also the founder of Aegis, a pro-democracy restaurant in Taipei, Taiwan, known to employ Hongkongers.

” [Police] brought me to many places to collect evidence. I have been a lawyer for over 30 years, 20 of which were practising in criminal law. I remain perplexed after much thought as to the reason I was arrested,” Wong told the press, upon release. “I will remain standing in my role and – with my expertise – do what I ought to and what I deeply believe in.”

Among the locations police searched and gathered evidence, were his car and his speedboat, but they did not take away any item as evidence, “because lawyers will not do anything illegal,” Wong said.

Upon Daniel Wong’s release, supporters chanted in front of the police station and embraced him. Photo: Michael Ho/Studio Incendo.

Wong was arrested along with seven men and three women by security law police officers on suspicion of aiding the 12, who were facing criminal charges in Hong Kong.

They were intercepted by Chinese authorities and detained in Shenzhen for four months. Last month, ten of the fugitives were given sentences ranging from seven months to three years by mainland authorities for illegally entering their waters, while two minors were returned to Hong Kong where they may face further charges.

Wong shouted pro-democracy slogans as he was led away by officers from his office to a vehicle on Thursday during his arrest, according to RTHK footage.

Daniel Wong Kwok-tung. Photo: Michael Ho/Studio Incendo.

Wong visited arrested democrat and former lawmaker Wu Chi-wai at a detention centre Saturday morning as previously scheduled, newspaper Ming Pao reported.

Last week, police arrested Wu alongside over 50 activists and former pro-democracy politicians under the security law for alleged subversion over the 2019 primary elections.

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Selina Cheng

Selina Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist who previously worked with HK01, Quartz and AFP Beijing. She also covered the Umbrella Movement for AP and reported for a newspaper in France. Selina has studied investigative reporting at the Columbia Journalism School.