Chinese lawyer who helped Hong Kong fugitive in Shenzhen says he is being tailed

Family members of the 12 Hongkongers detained in Shenzhen released balloon messages and called for their release on Nov. 21, 2020. Photo via Facebook/Save 12 HK Youths
Family members of the 12 Hongkongers detained in Shenzhen released balloon messages and called for their release on Nov. 21, 2020. Photo via Facebook/Save 12 HK Youths

A Chinese human rights lawyer who assisted one of the Hong Kong fugitives caught fleeing to Taiwan says he is being followed by unknown men.

Lu Siwei, a Sichuan-based lawyer, told Apple Daily on Saturday that he was recently tailed by four strangers dressed in black. He suspects that they could have been sent by mainland Chinese police, and that one of the men is a government worker in his district.

Lu was appointed by the family members of Quinn Moon, one of the 12 Hongkongers whose boat was intercepted by mainland Chinese authorities during an ill-fated escape to Taiwan last August.

10 of the 12 were trialed in a Shenzhen court late December. Moon and another activist, Tang Kai-yin, were found guilty of organizing an illegal border crossing and sentenced to two and three years in jail respectively.

Read more: Families of 12 fugitives detained in Shenzhen receive ‘letters’ claiming that all is well

The others were sentenced to seven months in jail on charges of illegal border crossing, while the remaining two who were below the age of 18 when they fled Hong Kong were not trialed on the mainland. Authorities transferred them back to the city on Dec. 30, and the two are currently undergoing a 14-day quarantine.

Earlier this month, Chinese authorities sent letters to Lu and Ren Quanniu, another lawyer assisting one of the Hongkongers, and threatened to revoke their practicing licenses. An activist group supporting the 12 activists said the move was “obviously revenge” for the lawyers’ involvement in the sensitive cases.

The letter to Lu, sent by Sichuan’s justice department, said the lawyer had “made multiple inappropriate remarks online” which “severely damaged the reputation of the legal industry.”

Lu wrote on Twitter that he had requested a hearing to appeal the license revocation even though he believes it would be “useless.”

“Last battle for dignity and justice! We are recoding history!” He tweeted last Tuesday.

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