HONG KONG––Media mogul Jimmy Lai faces months in jail just after a Hong Kong courtroom on Thursday denied him bail though awaiting trial on a fraud cost, the hottest in a procession of China critics to be put at the rear of bars.
Police on Wednesday charged Mr. Lai and two aides with fraud associated to the lease of a house, about 3 months just after a superior-profile raid involving nationwide-protection police on the places of work of his pro-democracy newspaper, Apple Day by day.
Mr. Lai has prolonged been a target of Chinese officials for his rhetoric towards Beijing. Prosecutors mentioned the nationwide-protection investigation is continuing and opposed bail for the seventy three-yr-previous, in accordance to regional media. Justice of the peace Victor So Wai-tak declined bail though placing the upcoming courtroom physical appearance for April 16, indicating Mr. Lai will be held for 4½ months in prison. Cheung Kim-hung, the main government of Apple Day by day father or mother Next Electronic, mentioned Mr. Lai will charm.
The decision arrives a day just after Joshua Wong, a top confront of Hong Kong’s protest motion, was sentenced to extra than a yr in prison for inciting and arranging a demonstration previous yr. Fellow activists Agnes Chow and Ivan Lam ended up also presented prison sentences.
The indictment towards Mr. Lai and Next Electronic senior executives Chow Tat-kuen and Wong Wai-keung alleges that a house leased by an Apple Day by day-affiliated business from a Hong Kong authorities entity hadn’t been used as intended, and the trio ended up in breach of the lease. Messrs. Chow and Wong ended up both granted bail, though Mr. Lai was not.