HONG KONG—A recent Hong Kong court case ruled that Falun Gong practitioners were falsely accused of damaging property of the Hong Kong Youth Care Association (HKYCA).
In the midst of an uncertain political climate in Hong Kong, Falun Gong practitioners say they remain steadfast in their demands for freedom of belief in China and for an end to the persecution of Falun Gong by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
Practitioners in Hong Kong volunteer at Falun Gong information booths located on streets in populated areas throughout the city. They hand out newspapers and brochures that explain the facts about the peaceful meditation discipline and inform people about the illegal organ harvesting and other forms of persecution that are happening to Falun Gong practitioners in China today.
On March 2, a dispute occurred between five members of the HKYCA and three Falun Gong practitioners at the Falun Gong information center stationed at Tsim Sha Shui Star Ferry Pier. According to Wincy Chan, one of the practitioners involved in the dispute, the HKYCA members placed their own banners directly in front of the Falun Gong banners.
A younger female practitioner volunteering at the information center stepped forward to defuse the situation.
“After she asked them to move their banners, the members of the Youth Care Association surrounded her. They began to aggressively harass her, one man going as far as grabbing her,” said Ms. Chan.
At this point, the encircled practitioner called for police intervention. A policeman rushed to the scene, and when he arrived, the HKYCA members reported that the two female practitioners had purposefully damaged the banners of the HKYCA.
All parties involved were taken to the police station to give a further detailed report on the dispute.
“The police officers already seemed skeptical of the claims [of the HKYCA members],” Ms. Chan said.
The dispute was formally taken to court in Kowloon City in front of a judge. A cross-examination between two HKYCA members was conducted, and various discrepancies were immediately found.
The judge declared the claims of the HKYCA to be false and ruled that they were to compensate the accused for all court costs.
“Proceedings were originally scheduled to last all day; however, the trial was over by the time the morning ended,” Ms. Chan reported. “They didn’t even ask us much about what happened before they decided on the verdict.”
This type of situation is neither unique nor unfamiliar to Falun Gong practitioners. Ms. Chan explained, “Their behavior now is actually a lot more temperate than before. A few months ago, they were even more rude and aggressive in their harassment, and these situations were never fairly resolved.”