Disgraced former Hong Kong minister Patrick Ho Chi-ping has appealed against his conviction in the US over a multimillion-dollar bribery case. Jason Ng, a US lawyer and convenor of Hong Kong’s Progressive Lawyers Group, said that for Ho to successfully appeal he would either have to present new evidence or witnesses, challenge the evidence from the prosecutors’ side or argue that the judge wrongly interpreted legal principles.
Written in 2019, a report on Hong Kong’s rule of law may make for uncomfortable reading – but to the authors, it is also a reminder that there is much work to be done. Next month the Progressive Lawyers Group (PLG) will launch what it hopes will be an annual tradition: a record of major events affecting Hong Kong’s rule of law, paired with its own legal analysis and recommendations.
法政匯思看不見將「不當使用」國歌或「侮辱」國歌的行為刑事化能夠為社會帶來多大的實際效益，以為政府對人民的憲制權利 ── 包括對言論自由的侵害 ── 提供充份的正當理由。即使我們假設將與國歌相關的行為刑事化而對憲制權利衍生的限制有其正當性，這種限制應該是狹窄而被清晰定義的。然而，現時該草案非常粗疏且模糊不清；尤其是該草案的第 6 和第 7 條更無法符合「依法規定」的原則。(As a starting point, we see no material societal benefit or need in criminalising conduct involving the “misuse” of the national anthem or the “insult” of the national anthem, which justifies such encroachment on the constitutional rights of the individual, including the freedom of expression. Even assuming the restriction of constitutional rights by criminalising conduct involving the national anthem is justified, the boundary of such restriction should be narrowly drawn and clearly defined. However, the Bill in its current form is poorly drafted and appallingly lacking in clarity. In particular, the offence creating sections (Clauses 6 and 7) regrettably fall foul of the “prescribed by law” requirement.)
Progressive Lawyers Group Convenor Jason Y. Ng attended radio programme Backchat today to discuss, among other things, the Government’s plan to amend the extradition laws which will allow Hong Kong to hand over fugitives to mainland China.
Move over, national anthem law. Make room, anti-subversion bill. Here comes the government’s latest legislative menace: a fundamental policy shift in fugitive transfers between Hong Kong and mainland China. This time, the threat to personal security is bigger, more real, and has the potential to affect a broader range of people than any other government bill we’ve seen in recent years.
2019年2月12日，香港特別行政區政府（「特區政府」）保安局向立法會保安事務委員會提交修訂香港法例第503章《逃犯條例》以及第525章《刑事事宜相互法律協助條例》的建議（「該建議」）。若該建議修訂獲通過，特區政府將能夠移交刑事案件的疑犯至尚未與香港簽訂正式雙邊引渡協議的司法管轄區（「非協議地區」），包括中國內地、台灣和澳門 (On 12 February 2019, the Security Bureau of the Hong Kong SAR government submitted a proposal (the “Proposal”) to the Legislative Council’s (the “Legco”) Panel on Security to amend the Fugitive Offenders Ordinance (Cap. 503) (“FOO”) and the Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Ordinance (Cap. 525) (“MLAO”). If adopted, the amendments will allow the SAR government to surrender suspects in criminal cases between Hong Kong and jurisdictions with which the SAR has not entered into a formal bilateral extradition agreement (“non-contracting jurisdictions”), including mainland China, Taiwan and Macau).
A coalition of lawmakers, activists and civil society groups have said that the ongoing consultation for two reform proposals – an archives law, and an access to information law – should be extended for another two months.
Public consultation on the two proposals began last December and was intended to last three months. However, the arrangement was criticised on Wednesday by lawmakers Charles Mok and Tanya Chan, along with the Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA), the Archives Action Group (AAG) and the Progressive Lawyers Group.
法政匯思很榮幸邀請到 職工盟(HKCTU) 主席 吳敏兒 Carol Ng（Carol）小姐擔任一月月會的嘉賓，與成員分享她參與本地工運的心路歷程 (We were honored to have 吳敏兒 Carol Ng, chairperson of 職工盟(HKCTU), join us for our January monthly general meeting)。
PLG member Alvin Cheung writes: "The independence and relevance of Hong Kong’s judiciary may now be in doubt [...] Interventions from Beijing are likely to dictate outcomes to Hong Kong’s courts not only in cases directly involving political rights, but also cases that involve major policy initiatives such as public infrastructure projects."
美國執業律師、法政匯思發言人Jason Y. Ng表示，根據美國證監會條文，管理層需要披露其工作經驗、職能、在機構外的主要商業活動等，很多美國上市的中國國有企業，都沒有公開自己的共產黨員身份。除非可以證明其身份對公司的生意營運、財政狀況有重大影響，否則如共產黨員身份與公司生意無關，便毋須硬性規定披露。他認為要證明馬雲為公司所作的決定，是受其黨員身份影響，例如電郵、電話錄音，證明國家有干預阿里巴巴，「不過到其時，阿里巴巴所要面對的問題，是比無披露馬雲身份更嚴重」。
The Progressive Lawyers Group is honoured to be invited to attend the opening event of One City One Book Hong Kong and talk about this year’s chosen book, “The Arrival” by Australian Chinese graphic novelist Shaun Tan.
“I can understand if China used Annex III to enact nationwide laws to protect national security,” said Craig Choy, a convener of the Progressive Lawyers’ Group. “But is a national anthem law really a matter of PRC or Hong Kong’s national security? I don’t think so.”