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China Daily Website

Falun Gong member fined for criminal damage

Updated: 2012-09-26 17:06

A Falun Gong practitioner, who damaged an anti-Falun Gong banner hanging outside a metro station in Hong Kong, was found guilty of two counts of criminal damage and one of obstructing public officers in performing their duties.

The woman, whose surname is Lo, was fined HK$4,500 ($580) by a local magistrate.

Additional charges were pressed against the woman because of events inside the police station where she was taken, including refusing to have her fingerprints taken.

The prosecution alleged that the accused cut through an anti-Falun Gong banner put up by a Hong Kong civic organization on July 29, this year.

She was arrested at the scene of the incident outside the Hung Hom MTR station.

When taken to the police station for further inquiry, Lo was accused of obstructing police officers, by tearing up statement forms and refusing to have her photograph taken. She was charged with two counts of criminal damage and one count of obstructing a public officer.

All three charges were established by the Kowloon City Magistrates' Courts on Sept 12. The defendant remained uncooperative throughout the trial, standing firm on her plea of innocence. Lo went on to claim that "the Falun Dafa is the greater law in the universe."

A representative of the organization whose property was damaged told the press that the defendant had never admitted her guilt, adding that her remarks at the trial showed no sign of remorse.

The organization spokesman said solicitors would be instructed to demand that the Department of Justice of the SAR government appeal to a higher court, seeking a heavier penalty. He also advocated re-evaluation of the meaning of criminal damage to better protect freedom of expression and private property of the people of Hong Kong.