Hong Kong court denies bail to Jimmy Lai over alleged fraud

Published (HKT): 2020.12.03 12:06

Hong Kong media tycoon and democracy activist Jimmy Lai will be remanded in custody until April next year, after being charged with fraud on Wednesday.

The Apple Daily founder was taken to the West Kowloon Magistrates’ Courts on Thursday morning. His case was heard by Chief Magistrate Victor So, one of the several judges who was hand-picked by Chief Executive Carrie Lam to handle national security cases.

Next Digital’s director Royston Chow and the media group’s administrative director Wong Wai-keung were also charged with fraud on Wednesday.

Chow and Wong were granted bail, while Lai’s application was rejected.

The trio are accused of breaching land-lease terms by improperly using Next Digital’s office in Tseung Kwan O.

The prosecution opposed the granting of bail and sought adjournment of the case to April next year.

Lai and his top aides were arrested in a high-profile operation in August where over 200 police officers raided Apple Daily’s newsroom on the same day. Lai and Chow were also accused of colluding with foreign forces under the new national security law.

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