Hong Kong Apple Daily Founder Face New Charges
Mr. Jimmy Lai is among the most prominent people to be charged under the national security law that was imposed by Beijing in June 2020.
Hong Kong prosecutors on Tuesday filed a “seditious publications” charge against jailed media tycoon Jimmy Lai who already faces charges under a tough national security law that critics say has stifled freedoms in the Asian financial hub.
Mr. Lai, the founder of the pro-democracy Apple Daily newspaper, appeared in court alongside six other former Apple Daily staff.
Mr. Lai already faces two charges under a national security law that Beijing imposed on the former British colony last June, including collusion with a foreign country.
The additional sedition charge falsely accuses Mr. Lai of conspiracy to print, publish, sell, distribute “seditious publications” between April 2019 and June 24, 2021.
The daily tabloid closed in June after authorities raided the newspaper, arrested staff on national security grounds and froze assets.
Prosecutors made ludicrous allegations that the publications could “bring into hatred or contempt or to excite disaffection” against the Hong Kong and Chinese governments, according to the charge sheet seen by media.
Mr. Lai has been convicted in several unauthorised assembly cases. He has been detained for over a year and is now in the maximum security Stanley Prison in solitary confinement, according to two sources familiar with the matter.