Seven prominent Hong Kong democrats – including former League of Social Democrats (LSD) chairs Raphael Wong and Avery Ng, and LSD members Figo Chan, and “Long Hair” Leung Kwok-hung – have pleaded guilty to offences in connection with 2019 protests and unrest.

Albert Ho, Cyd Ho, Leung Kwok-hung, Raphael Wong, Figo Chan, Avery Ng, Yeung Sum.
From left to right: Albert Ho, Cyd Ho, Leung Kwok-hung, Raphael Wong, Figo Chan, Avery Ng, Yeung Sum. Photo: HKFP Remix.

The four LSD figures and veteran democrats Yeung Sum and Cyd Ho admitted organising a demonstration on October 20 that year in Kowloon.

Chan, Leung, Cyd Ho, and Albert Ho admitted another charge of conspiring to incite others to attend an unauthorised protest on October 19 that year, near the Court of Final Appeal in Central.

Already in jail

Prosecutors said the defendants used social media to urge people to take part in the Kowloon demonstration, despite knowing that police had not issued a letter of no objection. They were also accused of marching with banners in the protest, where violence erupted later, Citizen News reported.

Apart from Raphael Wong, the democrats are currently serving sentences in connection with other 2019 protest-related offences. Wong was granted bail until Friday, when the defendants will make their mitigation submissions.

Wan Chai government tower district court eastern magistrate
Wan Chai government tower and courts. File Photo: Selina Cheng/HKFP.

Protests erupted in June 2019 over a since-axed bill that would have allowed extradition of suspects to mainland China. They escalated into sometimes violent displays of dissent against police behaviour, amid calls for democracy and anger over Beijing’s encroachment into Hong Kong’s affairs.

Demonstrators demanded an independent probe into police conduct, amnesty for those arrested and a halt to the characterisation of protests as “riots.” 

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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.