The Senate of the HKU Student Union moved to praise the suspected murderer Leung Kin-fai in the police assassination case, and continued to intercede in the District Court today (20th). The defense pointed out that the defendants' voluntary withdrawal of the motion after the case had greatly reduced the seriousness of the case, and that Zhang Jingsheng, then chairman of the senate and a law student, had tried his best to remedy the case after the incident. However, Judge Xie Shenzhi questioned that expressing their views through the official channel of the student union was actually an abuse of power, which amounted to "private use of public instruments". The defense stressed that university students inevitably make mistakes in the process of learning to become adults, and said: "Everyone makes mistakes." The judge countered that even if no one is guilty, not everyone is bound to commit a crime, especially a law student. The judge adjourned the case until sentencing on the 30th of this month, during which time the four defendants were to be remanded in custody.
The four defendants, Cheung King Sang (4), Kwok Wing-ho (21), To Lam Cheng Hang (23) and Yung Chung-hei (22), pleaded guilty to the alternately charged offence of inciting others with intent to injure others on 21 July 4, alleging that the four unlawfully incited others in Hong Kong with the intention of causing serious bodily harm to police officers and unlawfully and maliciously harmed police officers. They were also originally charged with one count of advocacy of terrorism, which all four defendants denied and which was later dropped by a judge.
The defense pointed out that the first defendant, Cheung King Sang, tried hard to get admitted to the most famous university in Hong Kong, and that the case was not well thought out when it happened
Senior barrister Pang Yiu-hung now interceded on Cheung's behalf, saying that Cheung's background was not that of other defendants, but he still managed to get admitted to the most prestigious university in Hong Kong, where he studied for a double degree programme in law and sociology and was appreciated by his professors. Cheung also participated in community services, including assisting Tai O residents to evacuate their homes in the early morning storm in Hong Kong. In this case, Zhang did not intend to evade responsibility and had planned to resign after the incident, but because he had to hold a meeting to withdraw the motion, he also had to deal with the handover of the student union after that, and did not resign until the end.
The judge mentioned that the Dean of HKU Law Faculty of Law Fu Hualing had written directly to the court to intercede on Zhang's behalf, and Fu was now the Chan Chi Hoi Foundation Chair Professor (Human Rights and Responsibilities) at HKU. The judge pointed out that, as Chen Zhihai, a donor to the fund, said, human rights are important, but it is also important to exercise them responsibly.
In response to Peng's claim that Zhang had not publicized on his personal social platform beforehand, wouldn't it be more serious for the judge to retort that the defendants filed the motion through the official channel of the student union? Peng responded that Zhang had not thought it out and regretted his stupid behavior. The judge again questioned that Zhang had put the blame on the other defendants when recording the confession, trying to dismiss the relationship.
HKU 4 vividly discussed supporting the suspected assassination of the police, pleaded for intercession, but was not widely reported by the media Has publicly apologized, HKU 4 students moved to discuss the assassination incident At the meeting, they paid tribute to the suspected murderer Admitted the crime of incitement and awaited sentencing Mainland girls contacted the leaders of the <> democracy movement Plan June <> to display the straight banner Confessed the picture as incitement The day after the July <> assassination of the police, the technician even logged a message carrying a knife and the location of the attack, confessed to inciting imprisonment for half a year
The defense pointed out that the defendants decided to withdraw the motion to reduce the seriousness of the case, and the officer said that it was withdrawn only after fierce criticism
Pang explained that Zhang was in and out of informal meetings with the other defendants to discuss the withdrawal motion, only to learn later that the other defendants had decided to withdraw the motion and apologize. The judge questioned whether the apology letter was not sent without constitutional process by the student union, or even exceeded its authority, if the meeting was not held informally.
Peng stressed that the defendants' decision to withdraw the motion has largely eliminated the seriousness of the case. The judge agreed that this was a plea factor, but the question was how much weight should be given, since the defendants withdrew their motions only after the motion was fiercely criticized by the society. Pang reiterated that the withdrawal motion mitigated the seriousness of the case, that Zhang had tried his best to remedy it, and that he had suffered as a result of remand.
The judge asked rhetorically, "Wasn't the author of his misfortune his misfortune?" Peng agreed, but stressed that no one has a fault, and that university is a place to learn how to become an adult, and that mistakes are inevitably made in the process, and that mistakes that should be limited to the safe environment of university are now magnified. The judge countered that it was the defendants who chose to amplify the incident, and that the defense's alleged mistake, once involved a criminal offense, would remain for the rest of his life.
▼July 2021, 7 HKU Student Union officers apologize and resign▼
The judge questioned that the defendant's expression of his ideas through the university student union amounted to "private use of public instruments"
The judge also held that the defendant in this case abused his power in the student union by expressing his thoughts through the university student union, which amounted to "private use of public instruments". Peng responded that Zhang regretted his actions and reiterated: "To err is human." The judge agreed that no one is perfect, but pointed out that not everyone can commit crimes, especially a law student.
In addition, the defence earlier claimed that the defendants and the prosecution reached a plea negotiation, but because they wanted to wait for the final court's judgment in Lu Shiyu's case, they changed to guilty pleas at a later time, hoping that the court could grant more than 1/4 of the deduction. However, the judge said that if each defendant waited for other cases to answer the case, it would create "complete chaos" and mock the higher court's sentencing guidelines.
The court revealed that Guo Yonghao once planned to admit to advocating terrorism, but after changing the legal team, he reached a plea negotiation with the prosecution in response to Lui Shiyu's case. However, the judge held that the defence could not "turn back the clock", saying that Kwok could receive more deductions as a result, and the defence could have anticipated that the sentences for admitting "advocacy of terrorism" and alternating charges were only because the former had a minimum sentence and the latter did not have such a limit, and the court had more room to reduce it.
Case number: DCCC 917/2021