An internet radio host linked to a fundraising campaign for young Hong Kong protesters to study in Taiwan has been hospitalised ahead of his first hearing on charges related to sedition.
Prosecutors revealed that Edmund Wan Yiu-sing, better known as “Giggs”, a host on the internet radio channel D100, reported feeling unwell and sought medical attention on Sunday night.
The 52-year-old was due to make his first court appearance on Monday to face four counts of committing an act with seditious intent, stemming from what he said during internet programmes he hosted on four occasions between August and October last year.
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In his absence, Chief Magistrate Victor So Wai-tak adjourned the case to Thursday, or as soon as Wan is discharged from Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital in Chai Wan, where he was expected to stay for at least two nights.
Wan launched the online radio show A Thousand Fathers and Mothers: Taiwan Education Aid last February, using it to discuss topics in support of the 2019 anti-government protest movement and to call on viewers to donate funds for the education and living expenses of young Hong Kong protesters fleeing to Taiwan.
Wan was accused of having the intention “to bring into hatred or contempt or to incite disaffection” against the Beijing and Hong Kong governments, according to West Kowloon Court documents.
His radio broadcasts were allegedly intended to “raise discontent or disaffection”, “counsel disobedience to law or any lawful order”, or “excite inhabitants of Hong Kong to attempt to procure the alteration, otherwise than by lawful means, of any other matter in Hong Kong as by law established”.
The four shows were said to have aired on August 8, August 15, September 5 and October 10.
Section 10 of the Crimes Ordinance forbids doing, attempting to do or conspiring to do any act with seditious intention. It also outlaws the uttering of seditious words and the printing, display or import of seditious publications.
First-time offenders face a fine of HK$5,000 (US$645) and imprisonment of up to two years.
Last September, opposition activist Tam Tak-chi of the localist group People Power became the first person charged with sedition under the Crimes Ordinance since Hong Kong’s return to mainland China in 1997.
Tam was accused of uttering seditious words by stirring up hatred against the Hong Kong government on multiple occasions, some of which took place before Beijing’s imposition of the national security law in June of last year.
He was denied bail and has been remanded in custody ever since.