In Hong Kong, three activists have been sentenced to prison terms up to six years for their involvement in a thwarted bombing scheme targeting public buildings.
Initially charged under the national security law with “conspiracy to commit terrorism,” these individuals were members of the pro-independence group “Returning Valiant.”
Their plot, conceived in the wake of pro-democracy protests in 2021, was intercepted in July 2021 before any explosives were manufactured.
The court learned that Ho Yu-wang, Kwok Man-hei, and Cheung Ho-yeung planned to create bombs using TATP to target government offices, police quarters, court buildings, and railways between April and July 2021.
Ho, 17 at the time of his arrest and deemed the “ring leader,” pleaded guilty and received a six-year sentence. Cheng, 23, also received six years, while Kwok, 21, was sentenced to 30 months after both pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of “conspiracy to cause explosions.”
High Court Judge Alex Lee acknowledged the influence of the “hostile social atmosphere” during the pro-democracy protests, suggesting it could lead individuals astray. Earlier, four others involved in the plot were sentenced in May.
The national security law, implemented in 2020, has been a point of contention, with foreign authorities criticizing it as a means to suppress opposition, while Beijing defends it as necessary for maintaining order. Nearly 300 individuals have been arrested under this controversial law to date.