Mute the review: Hundreds of police officers raided the offices of pro-Democratic Apple Daily B todayHong Kong, Arrested the editor-in-chief and other senior officials and confiscated assets worth millions of dollars due to accusations of violating the National Security Law.
About 500 security personnel arrived at the newspaper’s offices at six in the morning and searched for “journalistic materials,” while the journalists broadcast the raid live on the newspaper’s website. Editor Ryan Lau, CEO Chong Kim-Hang, Chief Operating Officer Chu Tat-kuan and two other senior editors were arrested. Authorities also confiscated Hong Kong $ 18 million worth of assets from three Apple Daily affiliates.
The head of the National Security Unit, Steve Lee, accused the daily of violating the National Security Act. He claims that since 2019, some thirty articles have been published in Chinese and English that constitute “solid evidence” of alleged conspiracy intended to ask the powers to impose sanctions on China or Hong Kong. “These articles are inciting,” he said. “Sharp and smooth.”
Homeland Security Minister Hong Kong’s Home Secretary John Lee has denied allegations that the raid on Apple Daily violated press freedom. He called on residents “to stay away from the perpetrators or you will pay the price.”
The pro-democracy daily was founded by press mogul Jimmy Lai, 73, who was also the target of persecution following last year’s National Security Act. Lai was sentenced to 20 months in prison for offenses of organizing an illegal protest and is still expected to stand trial for offenses under the National Security Act and could be sent to life in prison.