Hong Kong opposition activist Agnes Chow declared wanted by police for jumping bail after fleeing to Canada

Hong Kong opposition activist Agnes Chow declared wanted by police for jumping bail after fleeing to Canada

Hong Kong opposition activist Agnes Chow Ting, who jumped bail and fled to Canada in December, has been placed on a police wanted list.

Andrew Kan Kai-yan, deputy police commissioner overseeing national security, on Tuesday said the co-founder of the now-disbanded Demosisto party was wanted for breaching bail conditions late last year.

“I want to emphasise that absconding is a shameful act and anyone who has fled should not delude themselves that they can elude criminal responsibility by leaving Hong Kong,” Kan said at an annual round-up on the city’s law and order situation.

“Unless Chow surrenders to the police, she will be pursued for life.”

In December last year, Chow said she would skip bail and stay in Canada after she obtained police permission to study for a master’s degree in the country rather than periodically returning to the city to report to police as part of her bail conditions.

image
Deputy police commissioner Kan Kai-yan (first left) has said the force will pursue Agnes Chow for life. Photo: May Tse

The activist’s announcement drew widespread criticism from authorities, including Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu and Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin, who condemned Chow’s behaviour as “irresponsible” and “openly challenging the law”.

The 27-year-old activist was arrested in 2020 on suspicion of collusion with a foreign country or external elements damaging national security. Police granted her bail and did not charge her, but they confiscated her passport.

In an Instagram post, where she announced her intention to jump bail, Chow said she was required to go on a trip to Shenzhen with national security police in order to get her passport back.

Hong Kong opposition activist Agnes Chow’s parents ‘questioned by police’

She said she attended an exhibition on the nation’s reform and opening-up policies and visited the headquarters of internet giant Tencent during the tour.

Chow added she was subsequently asked to write a letter expressing gratitude to police for arranging a trip that allowed her to “understand the great development of the motherland”.

So far, the force has issued wanted notices for 13 other fugitives bearing national security offences.

Among those fugitives are former legislators Nathan Law Kwun-chung, Dennis Kwok Wing-hang and Ted Hui Chi-fung, unionist Mung Siu-tat, lawyer Kevin Yam Kin-fung, activists Finn Lau Cho-dik, Anna Kwok Fung-yee and Elmer Yuan Gong-yi.

image
Agnes Chow jumped bail and fled to Canada in December. Photo: Felix Wong

Activists Simon Cheng Man-kit, Frances Hui Wing-ting, Joey Siu Nam, Johnny Fok Ka-chi and Tony Choi Ming-da have also been put on the wanted list since December last year for inciting secession and subversion, as well as colluding with foreign forces.

Amid a growing wave of scams that contributed the most to the city’s increase in crime reports in 2023, Police Commissioner Raymond Siu Chak-yee said the force had detected 16 videos using deepfake technology in suspicious activities between November last year and February 2 this year.

Hong Kong police hit out as activist Agnes Chow fails to report under bail terms

“So far, the police has not received any reports from residents who have been directly deceived by these deepfake videos,” Siu said.

The force launched an investigation into the city’s first fraud case involving the deepfake technology last August, arresting six people for creating doctored images from stolen Hong Kong identity cards with an AI face-changing programme to apply for loans.

When asked about the state of some activists arrested during the 2019 anti-government protests but still not charged, Siu said police handled each case individually.

Agnes Chow ‘not the only national security law suspect allowed to leave city’

The commissioner added that 2,955 out of the 10,279 protesters arrested had been charged with offences, ranging from rioting to wounding and illegal assembly by the end of last year.

“Regarding individual cases, the force has already handled them individually according to circumstances. We will also handle the rest of the cases by considering multiple factors in accordance with the law,” Siu said.

image

  

Read More

Leave a Reply