In response to the public procession on the case on sentence review today (August 20), a spokesman for the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government gave the following response:
Over the past 20 years since the establishment of the HKSAR, the freedom and the right of speech, demonstration, assembly, etc have all along been protected by the Basic Law. The rule of law and judicial independence are the important elements of the success of the "one country, two systems" policy and are widely recognised by the international community. Both the HKSAR Government and Hong Kong people respect and safeguard these core values.
Regarding the Court of Appeal case concerning Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow, as clearly pointed out by the Department of Justice (DoJ) earlier, the decisions to prosecute and appeal were made in accordance with the Prosecution Code, applicable laws and relevant evidence. There is absolutely no political consideration involved. Further, allegations that the Court is under political interference are totally unfounded and groundless. We notice that the joint statement of the Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society of Hong Kong has pointed out the errors in these allegations.
In fact, the Court's acceptance of DoJ's application to review the sentence meant that the application is well founded on legal grounds. In other words, the whole process, from the decision to prosecute, conviction, DoJ's application for sentence review and the judgment of the Court of Appeal, has been proceeded in accordance with Hong Kong's effective legal system.
The HKSAR Government is aware that the community has different views on the judgment and notices that the relevant defendants have indicated to lodge appeals. The case should be handled in accordance with judicial procedures.
Ends/Sunday, Aug 20, 2017