Hong Kong police yesterday arrested a lawyer and 10 others on suspicion of helping 12 Hong Kong pro-democracy advocates try to flee the territory, media reported.
The fresh wave of arrests comes a week after 55 advocates were apprehended in the largest move against Hong Kong’s democracy movement since Beijing imposed the National Security Law in June last year.
Police arrested eight men and three women aged 18 to 72 for “assisting offenders,” the South China Morning Post reported, citing unnamed sources.
They were quoted as saying that investigations so far indicated those arrested were not in breach of any offenses under the national security legislation.
Those arrested are suspected of helping the 12 Hong Kongers who were detained at sea by mainland Chinese authorities while attempting to sail to Taiwan in August last year.
Some of the fugitives were wanted in Hong Kong for offenses related to anti-government protests in 2019.
Police did not immediately comment on the arrests.
District councilor and lawyer Daniel Wong Kwok-tung (黃國桐) posted on his Facebook page that national security officers had arrived at his home.
He was later taken to his office, where police conducted a search.
Wong, who is a member of the Democratic Party, is known for providing legal assistance to hundreds of advocates arrested during the 2019 protests.
Last month, 10 of those detained at sea were sentenced to prison in Shenzhen, China, for illegally crossing the border, with sentences ranging from seven months to three years.
The two other detainees, who are minors, were handed over to Hong Kong and could face further charges in the territory for absconding, authorities said.
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