Teen who set alight national flag ordered probation, counselingLocal | 13 Dec 2019 6:09 pm
A 13-year-old girl who set fire to a Chinese flag during an anti-government protest in September has been put on probation for a year by the Juvenile Court at Tuen Mun Magistracy.
The court also gave the girl a curfew and ordered her to participate in rehabilitation and group counselling.
The teenager had taken part in a "Reclaim Tuen Mun Park" protest, where she set fire to a national flag with a lighter outside Tuen Mun Town Hall.
She pleaded guilty to desecrating the flag.
Lawyer Douglas Kwok said his client had discussed her impulsive behavior with a probation officer and she now knows how to express her views in a rational and civilized manner.
Letters from the girl's secondary school and the coach of a football team she played on were submitted to the court, urging it to give her a second chance.
Magistrate Kelly Shui noted that a probation report on the teenager was positive and it showed that she is not arrogant.
Shui said in view of the fact that Hong Kong's social turmoil has not subsided, she wanted to warn the girl that it is very dangerous to be influenced by others and she should consider the consequences of her actions.
The magistrate also said that many people have lost their freedom as a result of such behavior.
She warned the girl not to expect a lenient sentence due to her young age if she commits a more serious offense in the future.