May 23, 2024

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Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai denied bail as Pompeo tweets support

HONG KONG — Jimmy Lai, the 73-12 months-outdated Hong Kong media tycoon and advocate for democracy, was denied bail Saturday, just after staying billed the former working day below the territory’s new countrywide protection law.

Lai faces a charge of collusion with overseas things to endanger countrywide protection, evidently for tweets he created and interviews or commentaries he gave to international media.

Secretary of Condition Mike Pompeo tweeted Saturday morning Asia time that the safety law “will make a mockery of justice.” He referred to as for Lai’s quick launch, saying his only crime was speaking the fact about China’s authoritarian Communist Get together government.

The Apple Every day, a feisty pro-democracy tabloid owned by Lai, said he is accused of inquiring a foreign nation, group or person to impose sanctions or engage in other hostile activities from Hong Kong or China.

His situation was adjourned to April 16 at the ask for of prosecutors, who explained law enforcement desired time to assessment a lot more than 1,000 tweets and opinions produced on his Twitter account, the Apple Day-to-day described. The newspaper said his cost sheet detailed many international politicians who adopted Lai on Twitter.

Lai was seen handcuffed to a chain all over his waist as guards led him to a van to go from jail to courtroom. He wore a navy blazer and an open-neck shirt.

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Lai, the greatest-profile man or woman charged less than the security regulation, has also been arrested for other alleged offenses this calendar year. He has been charged with having portion in unauthorized protests and with fraud above alleged violations of office lease terms.

Beijing imposed the national stability legislation on Hong Kong previously this year soon after stormy protests in 2019 that started in excess of an extradition monthly bill and expanded to include demands for larger democracy in the previous British colony.

The new regulation outlaws secession, subversion, terrorism and collusion with overseas forces to intervene in Hong Kong’s affairs. Democracy activists see it as a way to suppress dissent.

Lai has extended advocated for other countries to choose a harsher stance on China, and satisfied with Pompeo and Vice President Mike Pence in the U.S. very last yr to discuss the extradition monthly bill, which the Hong Kong federal government eventually withdrew.

Pence also tweeted about Lai, expressing the expenses against him were “an affront to freedom loving persons around all over the place.”