On Sunday, the police chief superintendent announced in a press conference that a 23-year-old man in Tin Shui Wai was arrested Saturday under the charges of “access to computer with criminal or dishonest intent” and “unlawful assembly”.
The man had written on an online forum encouraging people to join the protests in Mong Kok, “charge at police” and “paralyse the railways”. He was also suspected of “taking part in the unlawful assembly” in Mong Kok, and was released on bail pending further investigation by the police.
The police chief superintendent said: “Under the current volatile circumstances in Mong Kok, such incitement is trampling the interests of the general public… I stress, inciting others to commit criminal acts on the internet is illegal. Police will investigate, gather evidence, and take arrest action.”
Under the Public Order Ordinance, unlawful assembly constitutes when three or more people gather and behave in a “disorderly, intimidating, insulting or provocative manner” that seems likely to cause a “breach of peace”.
Under the Crimes Ordinance, “any person who obtains access to a computer with intent to commit an offence; with a dishonest intent to deceive; with a view to dishonest gain for himself or another; with a dishonest intent to cause loss to another” can be imprisoned for up to five years.
Better watch out the next time you use Facebook to organise a party that turns rowdy, because you might just get yourself arrested! Heck, you should probably watch your back if you Tweet at a couple friends to invite them to check out the protests in Admiralty with you.
Photo: Stian Eikeland