Weʼve raised £201,064 to Prosecute British police officers for their treatment of Hong Kong pro-democracy protestors, which amounts to torture.
- Funded on Sunday, 6th December 2020
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***Please scroll down for English***
香港人在過去的一年持續地受到警暴的摧殘，而縱使警方濫用武力的證據在鏡頭下表露無遺，至今卻依然沒有警員因此受到懲處。有鑒於參與警暴的警務人員當中有多名為英籍人士，以裴倫德(Luke de Pulford)及羅冠聰為首的國際團隊進行了相關的調查，現確定有關英籍警務人員須為警暴負責，並將在英國的司法制度下就酷刑罪行提出私人檢控。
The people of Hong Kong have suffered sustained brutality at the hands of the Hong Kong Police Force. Despite clear evidence of excessive force, no officer has been disciplined. Many of those officers are British, and as such, they are subject to British law. After months of sifting through evidence, an international coalition of organisations and individuals, together with a top legal team, have determined that certain British expatriate police officers have a case to answer for torture - an offence in British law with universal jurisdiction.
This campaign seeks to achieve two things:
1. Raise sufficient funding to engage a full-time legal team in the UK to take the case through the next phase.
2. Gather further witness testimonies related to a) the Citic Tower incident on 12 June 2019 and b) from those who have suffered brutality within Hong Kong police stations.
If you have had first-hand exposure to the above events, please get in touch. A secure platform to collect this evidence will be made available very shortly. Your identity will not be disclosed unless you want it to be.
IMPORTANT: Money raised will be used exclusively to meet the costs of the case. We will never reveal details of witnesses coming forward. Any money left over from the case will be donated to a charity being created to assist Hong Kong people coming to the UK.
For any queries please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Since 1997, the world has been watching the demise of a civilisation; previously a proud and independent Hong Kong. Hong Kong’s status as a “special administrative region” of the People’s Republic of China means that it should have certain political and economic freedoms under a “one country, two systems,” policy developed in the 1980s.
In 2020, Beijing is again attempting to undermine those freedoms. In 2019 encroachment from Beijing sparked massive protests in 2019 against a proposed bill enabling the extradition of those in Hong Kong to mainland China, during which a large number of residents were hurt.
As the world watched on, scenes of chaos and brutality unfolded on live television as the police unleashed an ever-increasing level of force against citizens who took to the streets in lawful protest. Accounts of atrocities that had occurred within the police cells were retold in interviews and news reports by those who had suffered them. Indisputably, this peaceful, law abiding society which has, for decades, managed its own affairs with a high degree of autonomy, now stands threatened by draconian laws, reduced freedom of expression and rule by fear.
Having spent hundreds of hours reviewing videos, interview accounts, open source articles and reports relating to police brutality, we believe that Hong Kong people have been subjected to torture, both on the streets and within police custody.
A significant number of torture offences appear to have been committed or directed by Senior Officers of British Nationality. It is apparent that the UK Courts are an appropriate forum to hold these individuals accountable for their actions and indeed, the only independent forum that could be used for this purpose.
When Boris Johnson, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland announced the UK's "lifeboat" policy for Hong Kong people after the imposition of the National Security Law, he also said:
“Many people in Hong Kong fear that their way of life — which China pledged to uphold — is under threat. If China proceeds to justify their fears, then Britain could not in good conscience shrug our shoulders and walk away; instead we will honour our obligations and provide an alternative.”
It is our opinion that the UK's moral and legal obligations to Hong Kong extend to holding its own citizens to account for their behaviour, which is why this case has been launched.
Luke de Pulford, who has commissioned the case, is a British human rights activist, Fellow of UK-based pressure group Hong Kong Watch and well known in Hong Kong for his advocacy.
Nathan Law was the youngest ever legislator elected to the Hong Kong Legislative Council. He fled Hong Kong following the imposition of the National Security Law to raise his voice in defence of the movement for democracy in the city. He was recently named on a Hong Kong Police Force wanted list.
THE LEGAL PROCESS
Luke de Pulford has engaged the UK Firm of specialist investigators and prosecutors, Edmonds Marshall McMahon, to assist in investigating and prosecuting these potential cases of torture.
s134 of the UK’s Criminal Justice Act 1988 provides that:
A public official or person acting in an official capacity, whatever his nationality, commits the offence of torture if in the United Kingdom or elsewhere he intentionally inflicts severe pain or suffering on another in the performance or purported performance of his official duties.
Edmonds Marshall McMahon’s team, led by Kate McMahon and Mr Michael Polak (Church Court Chambers and a founder of “Justice Abroad”) are providing legal assistance to the project in identifying the clearest examples of torturous behaviour by who should be offering protection and providing lawful assistance to the citizens of Hong Kong. Following in-depth analysis, the team has concluded that the case will focus on two areas:
MALTREATMENT IN POLICE STATIONS
Since the start of the protest, thousands of citizens had been arrested, with numerous accounts of mistreatment in police station being reported through the media and recorded in reports commissioned by NGOs and human rights groups.
Most allegations were of physical assaults (being kicked and beaten), deliberate prolongation of suffering (long periods of cuffing behind the back, allowing remnants of pepper spray to remain on eyes and face), psychological intimidation (verbal assaults and degradation, threats of actual or implied mistreatment and sexual assault/ rape), sexual assault and rape. Such acts were committed by police officers who concealed their identities by covering their faces, not wearing any identification, hooding the victim and carrying out the acts in a darkened room.
Cases continues to come to light even to this day, and there is a need to investigate whether the trauma and suffering experienced by those in detention amounted to torture.
USE OF TEAR GAS AT CITIC TOWER
On 12 June 2019, a gathering was organised by the Civil Human Rights Front in protest the Fugitive Offenders Bill that would allow persons in Hong Kong to be extradited to mainland China. Prior permission had been granted for this gathering and a stage had been set up outside the main entrance of CITIC Tower, where a large crowd had gathered.
In the afternoon, tear gas was fired from both ends of the street where the rally was staged. Masses of people saw no exit route at ground level and tried to get in through the only opened door of the CITIC Tower entrance as tear gas continued to be fired into the crowd as they were bottle-necked outside. The exits from CITIC Tower were reportedly blocked while this happened.
The primary use of tear gas was for dispersal, and but in this incident, the manner at which it was fired (from opposite directions), and blockage of exit route from CITIC Tower, shows an intention to trap the crowd. This prolonged suffering from the tear gas caused panic and increased the risk of trampling within the crowd. At CITIC Tower, gas was fired towards into confined space, engineered by the police through blockades and cordons, directly at people who had no escape. As such, it may amount to torture.
You can read more about this incident, which has become known in Hong Kong as 6/12 here.
There is little real prospect of holding the police accountable through Hong Kong's criminal justice system. Complaints filed to the police have not been adequately dealt. Not a single police officer has been the subject of any criminal proceedings.
We are seeking justice on behalf of those who had suffered from police brutality through the UK courts system. To do this we need your help.
If you wish to help us bring a Private Prosecution against British police officers in Hong Kong, please give what you can.
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LUKE DE PULFORD started crowdfunding
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Nov 26, 2020
Oct 27, 2020
Thank you for everything ! We are eager to have justice!
Oct 19, 2020
Thank you for helping hk democracy protesters
Oct 1, 2020
Demand for justice
Sep 7, 2020
They hide behind the law - let the law seek them out
Sep 6, 2020
Thank you, please keep up the good work.
Sep 6, 2020
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About the fundraiser
LUKE DE PULFORD
Co-Founder and Director, Arise Foundation. Co-Founder, Coalition for Genocide Response. Fellow, Hong Kong Watch. Coordinator, The Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China. Adviser, World Uyghur Congress (UK). Commissioner, Conservative Party Human Rights Commission