Seven Hong Kong police officers have been convicted of assault for the beating of pro-democracy activist Ken Tsang during an Occupy protest in 2014.
In October 2014, Police officers were captured on camera kicking, punching and stepping on Tsang while his hands were bound in a video that quickly resulted in the officers being removed from their posts.
Over two years later, the seven officers were all found not guilty of one joint count of “causing grievous bodily harm with intent,” but were instead convicted of a lesser charge of “assault occasioning actual bodily harm.” Meanwhile, one officer, Chan Siu-tan, was also convicted of an additional count of common assault, South China Morning Post reports.
Tsang had testified that after he had splashed liquid from a bottle on a group of officers trying to clear a pro-democracy protest in Admiralty, he was arrested, had his hands bound behind his back, and was carried to a police substation where he was thrown to the ground and beaten.
However, the court did not believe that the injuries Tsang sustained to his face, neck, shoulders and back during the assault were enough to constitute “grievous bodily harm.”
Tsang also singled out Chan as being the officer who had slapped him twice in the face.
While two of the seven officers had not participated in the assault, they had watched as it happened and not tried to stop it, behavior that the court said amounted to encouraging and supporting the crime.
In Hong Kong, “assault occasioning actual bodily harm” carries a maximum sentence of three years in prison, while common assault is punishable with one year in jail.
In the high-profile case, the seven policemen had spent HK$9 million (USD$1.1 million) on their defense.
[Images via Apple Daily]
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