Jury Finds Jimmy Lai Guilty of Fraud

The United States is shocked and dismayed by the verdict handed down on October 25 against Hong Kong democracy activist Jimmy Lai’s Fraud Case Verdict , who was also the creator of the publication Apple Daily and was accused of making up fraud charges. We continue to have serious concerns regarding the way in which the National Security Law is systematically undermining Hong Kong’s autonomy and the way in which it is weakening protections for human rights and fundamental freedoms (NSL). One of these strategies is making more frequent use of the NSL in order to restrict free speech, independent media, and debate by the act of banning persons and organisations that voice disagreement with the government. Even though Lai’s trial for fraud was not founded on National Security Letter grounds, the more stricter NSL legal procedures were still followed by the local authorities. A provision of the Sino-British Joint Declaration, which is a legally binding international contract, is that the People’s Republic of China make a commitment to upholding Hong Kong’s high degree of autonomy as well as guaranteed rights and freedoms.

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