Hong Kong’s justice secretary, Bar Association and Law Society have issued condemnations after a suspicious package was sent to the city’s High Court.

High Court. Photo: Kelly Ho/HKFP.

The police were called to the courthouse on Tuesday afternoon after a can containing white powder was found inside the parcel.

HKFP was told on Wednesday by the force that the powder was believed to be protein powder, and no arrests had been made so far.

The city’s newly-inaugurated Secretary for Justice Paul Lam said in a statement on Tuesday evening that he was “deeply concerned about the incident.”

“The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government will pursue seriously against any person who commits any such act and bring the culprit to justice in order to defend the integrity of the court, ensure the due administration of the justice and maintain public order,” Lam said in the statement.

The Hong Kong Bar Association (HKBA), in a statement published on Wednesday morning, also condemned the act, and said that “any violence or threat against the Judiciary is unacceptable and intolerable in a civilised society governed by the rule of law.”

“Judges must be absolutely free to carry out their judicial duties without any interference, fear or favour. HKBA condemns such conduct in the strongest terms,” the statement read.

Law Society of Hong Kong. Photo: Kelly Ho/HKFP.

President of the Law Society Chan Chak-ming, said he condemned “all acts of intimidation against the judiciary” in a statement on Tuesday.

“I strongly condemn all acts of intimidation against the judiciary. Intimidation against judicial officers is not only a serious criminal offence, but also a threat to the rule of law and judicial independence, which are cornerstones of our society,” Chan’s statement read.

Previous incidents

The Judiciary had received intimidating letters and packages on several occasions over the past three years.

The most recent incident took place in November last year, where threatening letters were sent to the West Kowloon Magistrates’ Courts and Sha Tin Magistrates’ Courts. Police had to evacuate the West Kowloon court.

Support HKFP  |  Code of Ethics  |  Error/typo?  |  Contact Us  |  Newsletter  | Transparency & Annual Report

Support press freedom & help us surpass 1,000 monthly Patrons: 100% independent, governed by an ethics code & not-for-profit, Hong Kong Free Press is #PressingOn with impartial, award-winning, frontline coverage.

Candice Chau

Candice is a reporter at Hong Kong Free Press. She previously worked as a researcher at a local think tank. She has a BSocSc in Politics and International Relations from the University of Manchester and a MSc in International Political Economy from London School of Economics.