Hong Kong

6 former staff of Hong Kong newspaper plead guilty to conspiracy to commit collusion

Reuters
6 former staff of Hong Kong newspaper plead guilty to conspiracy to commit collusion

Members of the media take pictures and videos outside the headquarters of the Apple Daily newspaper and its publisher Next Digital, in Hong Kong, China June 23, 2021.

Tyrone Siu/REUTERS

The six plead guilty to conspiring with media tycoon Jimmy Lai and other people to request a foreign country or organization 'to impose sanctions or blockade, or engage in other hostile activities' against the Hong Kong and Chinese governments

HONG KONG – Six former staff of Hong Kong’s defunct pro-democracy newspaper Apple Daily pleaded guilty on Tuesday, November 22, to conspiracy to commit collusion with foreign forces in a closely watched national security case.

The six pleaded guilty to conspiring with media tycoon Jimmy Lai and other people to request a foreign country or organization “to impose sanctions or blockade, or engage in other hostile activities” against the Hong Kong and Chinese governments between July 2020 and June 2021.

The six include Cheung Kim-hung, who was chief executive of the newspaper’s former owner, Next Digital, Apple Daily’s former associate publisher Chan Pui-man, former editor-in-chief Ryan Law, former executive editor-in-chief Lam Man-chung, former English edition editor-in-chief Fung Wai-kong and former editorial writer Yeung Ching-kee.

In one of the former British colony’s biggest national security cases, Lai and the six former Apple Daily staff members were charged with conspiracy to commit collusion with foreign forces under the new security law imposed by Beijing in 2020.

A fierce critic of Beijing, Lai, who is already in jail after being convicted for his role in an illegal assembly in 2020, faces multiple charges under the national security law. His complicated legal proceedings are likely to drag on into next year, according to some legal analysts. – Rappler.com

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