See No Evil: Court grants injunction against identifying, photographing cops

Nothing to see here. Nothing at all. Photo by Vicky Wong.
Nothing to see here. Nothing at all. Photo by Vicky Wong.

Hong Kong’s High Court has issued an interim injunction order prohibiting the public from disclosing the personal information of police officers and their families — and even taking photos of them.

According to a writ filed by the Department of Justice today, the plaintiffs are the the secretary of justice and the commissioner of police on behalf of the city’s police force and auxiliary officers.

They requested the judges forbid “using, publishing, communicating or disclosing” any personal data of officers and their families.

The granting of the interim injunction effectively means that members of the public are banned from publishing any personal details, including names, police ID numbers, addresses, social media profiles, and even photographs of police officers.

 

News of the injunction has understandably sparked concern among reporters and lawyers about what this means for the rule of law and press freedom in Hong Kong, especially after months of intensifying police crackdowns and apparent attempts by officers to prevent observers from documenting their actions or from identifying them when making complaints.

The writ said people must also be banned from “assisting, causing, counselling, procuring, instigating, inciting, aiding, abetting or authorising others” to release such information.

It also said the public must be restricted from “intimidating, molesting, harassing, threatening, pestering or interfering” with any police officer.

RTHK reports that the injunction will be in force until November 8.

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CITY: HONG KONGCATEGORY: NEWS

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