Student denies rioting charge

Local | Erin Chan 29 May 2020

A 20-year-old student went on trial yesterday for allegedly rioting in Wong Tai Sin on National Day last year.

Lam Tsz-ho, also a part-time salesman, pleaded not guilty to one count of rioting when he appeared before district court judge Sham Shiu-man.

The prosecutor said that Lam was arrested on Tung Tau Tsuen Road in Wong Tai Sin on October 1 after hundreds of protesters gathered near the Disciplined Services Quarters.

Protesters were seen holding long umbrellas and wooden sticks, as well as setting up roadblocks and hurling bricks at police officers.

The prosecutor said the protests morphed into rioting when protesters refused to leave and kept hurling objects at officers, despite officers appealing over a loudspeaker for them to leave or they might have committed offenses relating to unlawful assembly.

Yeung Wan-kau, a police officer who was involved in the arrest operation, said an area near Lung Wai House of Lower Wong Tai Sin Estate via Tung Tau Tsuen Road was cordoned off at 3.30pm that day.

He said that at 4pm police carried out an operation, arresting about 10 suspects, including Lam.

Yeung testified that Lam left a strong impression as he had long hair and was the only protester at the scene who did not wear a helmet.

He also said that Lam was among a few protesters who left the barricade built with umbrellas and hurled bricks at police officers.

However, defense counsel Steven Kwan Man-wai said that there was a fire truck passing in front of officers, which may have blocked their view and caused them to arrest the wrong person.

Lam, who is on bail, will return to court today when the trial continues.

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