Hong Kong 'bomb' suspects denied bail

2015-07-22 10:26


Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Hong Kong - Four suspects charged over an alleged bomb plot in Hong Kong were denied bail on Wednesday in a case which has been met with scepticism by pro-democracy campaigners.

Police made the arrests last month days before lawmakers voted on a controversial Beijing-backed political reform package which had sparked mass street rallies at the end of last year.

Five men and one woman, aged 21 to 34, have been charged with conspiracy to cause an explosion after police said they found explosive chemicals during a raid.

Four of the five men applied for bail but were denied. The fifth man also remains in custody.

The woman had already been released on bail.

The five men have been held in custody for more than a month since their arrests mid-June.

"Why did you appear at a place where explosives were being tested? Why did you enter the location?" questioned magistrate Don So as he denied the bail applications.

"Only you were found at the scene," he added.


Police have said they seized chemicals which could be used to make explosives in the June raid and that one of those arrested admitted to being part of a "radical local group".

Local media named the group as the National Independent Party and linked it to a new "localist" pro-democracy movement which is seeking a more independent Hong Kong.

But activists accused the authorities of a smear campaign, with many saying they had never heard of the organisation.

The chemicals were seized at an abandoned television studio in the eastern district of Sai Kung, with some detonated at the scene.

A house search led to the seizure of ingredients which police said could be used to make TATP, a highly-volatile explosive believed to have been used in the deadly terror attacks in London in 2005.

Air rifles and "V for Vendetta" style face masks were also found. The masks were occasionally worn by protesters during the mass rallies and are a symbol of anti-establishment defiance worldwide.

During the suspects' first court appearance on June 17 they accused police of assaulting them or forcing them to cooperate by threatening them, the South China Morning Post reported at the time.

The suspects gave no further evidence Wednesday.

The case was adjourned until September 4.

Investigators are still testing the chemicals seized, prosecutor Noelle Chit said.

The are also examining websites the suspects browsed and messages they sent, as well as trying to access their phones and computers, she added.

Opposition legislators voted down the government's controversial reform bill in June on how Hong Kong would choose its next leader in 2017.

They labelled it "fake democracy" as it adhered to a ruling from Beijing that candidates would be vetted by a loyalist committee.

It was that ruling which sparked last year's mass protests which brought parts of the city to a standstill.

Read more on:    hong kong

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

Investment Associate

Cape Town
Mass Staffing Projects
R620 000.00 - R780 000.00 Per Year

Senior Investment Analyst

Cape Town
Tumaini Consulting
R550 000.00 - R775 000.00 Per Year

C# Developer

Cape Town
Goldman Tech Resourcing
R300 000.00 - R360 000.00 Per Year

Property [change area]

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.