The National Security Law has been implemented for more than a month. The National Security Department of the police arrested Jimmy Lai, the Founder of Apple Daily and Next Digital Group (Hong Kong), his two sons and Management Group this morning for violating the National Security Law. The police said that at least 7 people were arrested in arrests this morning, suspected of committing crimes such as colluding with foreign countries or foreign forces to endanger national security and conspiracy to commit fraud.
Police: Not ruling out more arrests
Police went to Jimmy Lai‘s apartment at 7 o’clock in the morning to execute a search warrant. As soon as the news came out, a large number of media were waiting outside of Jimmy Lai‘s apartment. At 9:40 in the morning, Jimmy Lai, accompanied by a lawyer, was taken away from the apartment by police officers. The police went to the residence of Jimmy Lai‘s second son, in Sai Kung to investigate and arrest.
The police later stated that at least 7 people were arrested this morning, all local men, ranging in age from 39 to 72. They are suspected of committing crimes such as colluding with foreign countries or foreign forces to endanger national security and conspiracy to commit fraud. The police stated that the operation is still in progress, and they are not ruling out more arrests.
According to reports from Oriental Daily and TVB, Jimmy Lai was accused of violating the “Hong Kong National Security Law” for “colluding with foreign groups to endanger national security“, “conspiracy to defraud” and “incitement” and arrested. The eldest son was accused of “conspiracy to defraud“, second son was accused of “colluding with foreign countries or foreign forces to endanger national security” in the “Hong Kong National Security Law“.
TVB News and Oriental Daily reported that Cassian Cheung, Chief Executive of Next Digital Group, was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit fraud, Stephen Ting, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer, was arrested on suspicion of colluding with foreign powers and conspiracy to commit fraud. Oriental Daily says that General manager of Next Media Animation, were also arrested for conspiracy to commit fraud.
Hundreds of police officers also allegedly held a warrant to search the Next Media Building in Tseung Kwan O. Senior Superintendent of the National Security Department met with some media reporters and said that the search went smoothly. He and a superintendent had conducted a “preliminary review.” “Look at the units where we can’t search.” For example, the editorial department may have News materials, “We don’t know how to search.” However, it can be seen from the live broadcast and live footage that plainclothes police officers searched the files in the reporter’s workshop.
Oriental Daily reported that Jimmy Lai was accused of frauds, breaching the terms of the land lease of Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate, and suspected of operating at least 14 independent companies in the Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate plant. The directors are all Jimmy Lai. Jimmy Lai’s second son runs 10 restaurants and companies provide “company secretarial” services.
Many media quoted police sources stating that National Security Department arrested Jimmy Lai and his younger son on suspicion of “collaborating with foreign forces” in violation of Article 29 of the “Hong Kong National Security Law” The charge can be sentenced to more than three years but not more than ten years in prison. If the crime is serious, it can be sentenced to more than ten years in prison, or even life imprisonment.