A Swiss man has been found not guilty of assisting a protest-related assault during a lunchtime demonstration last October.
Marc Progin was earlier facing allegations that he helped protesters attack a mainland Chinese man, surnamed Lin, who protesters told that “we are all Chinese” outside Chater House in Central.
The 75-year-old man walked free on Friday, holding up two thumbs up signs as he left the court, according to Stand News.
Progin was at the scene that October afternoon when Lin, a banker at JP Morgan, was assaulted on his way back the office after getting lunch.
According to local media, Progin—who is a photographer and was holding a camera—closed the door of the building after Lin announced “we are all Chinese.”
Progin argued that he did so to get a better shot, but the prosecution said he deliberately shut the door, leaving him nowhere to run when protesters began attacking and cornering him.
The magistrate ruled that there is no evidence that Progin, a retiree who with an interest in nature photography and documentaries, had any relationship with the people on the scene or bore any hostility towards Lin.
Progin has been photographing the city’s social movements since 2012, the magistrate said.
Speaking outside the court Friday, Progin said he was pleased with the verdict. The independent photographer said he was there capturing the events like all the other journalists who were reporting there, but that he unfortunately was “at the wrong place at the wrong time.”
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