Date
13 December 2017
Student leaders (from left) Nathan Law, Joshua Wong and Alex Chow outside the court on Monday. Photo: VOA/YouTube
Student leaders (from left) Nathan Law, Joshua Wong and Alex Chow outside the court on Monday. Photo: VOA/YouTube

Three student leaders on trial over Civic Square protest

Three student leaders went on trial on Monday over their alleged involvement in the “Reclaim Civic Square” action a few days before the Occupy movement began in 2014.

Joshua Wong, 18, convenor of the student group Scholarism; Alex Chow, 25, former secretary-general of the Hong Kong Federation of Students, and Nathan Law, 22, who succeeded Chow last year, pleaded not guilty to the charges filed against them before the Eastern magistrates’ court, Apple Daily reported.

Wong and Law were charged with inciting others to join and taking part in an unlawful assembly, while Wong and Chow were charged with taking part in an unlawful assembly.

The prosecution told the court that Scholarism had applied for an assembly in a site across the government headquarters in Admiralty on Sept. 26, 2014.

The police granted the application on condition the assembly had to end at 10 p.m. and participants should not enter the Civic Square on the east side of the government building.

However, Wong was accused of calling on students to join him in entering the square at 10:20 p.m. He and several other protesters ran toward it soon after he spoke.

Wong allegedly told police officers not to stop him.

Wong’s action was videotaped by the police and he was later arrested.

Law was also accused of urging protesters to surround the government headquarters.

At least 12 security guards were injured during clashes with the protesters.

The defense questioned several police officers, who it said appeared to have copied their written testimonies from each other about what happened that day because they were almost identical.

Calling it is unreasonable for the government to charge them, Wong said outside the court that justice will prevail.

The trial, which is scheduled to take seven days, continues on Tuesday.

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TL/AC/CG

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