Hong Kong Police's National Security Department on Wednesday morning arrested four members of a local political group suspected of being a "foreign agent".
The arrest came a day after the deadline that police gave for the group – the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China – to provide information to the police relating to a national security investigation. The alliance refused to comply with the police's requirement for information on Tuesday.
The arrest came a day after the deadline that police gave for the group – the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China – to provide information to the police relating to a national security investigation
According to local media reports, the four were Chow Hang-tung, its vice-chairwoman, and three other standing committee members: Leung Kam-wai, Tang Ngok-kwan and Chan Dor-wai.
READ MORE: Police condemn organization for refusing to provide information
In a statement, the Security Bureau said it supports the law enforcement actions taken by the police in accordance with the law against the group.
"Ignoring warnings given, the organization concerned resolutely insisted on refusing to comply with the police’s requirement to provide information pursuant to Schedule 5 of the Implementation Rules. Hence, the police have to take law enforcement actions,” a spokesman for the Security Bureau said.
The spokesman reiterated that any law enforcement actions taken by the law enforcement agencies are based on evidence, strictly according to the law, and for the acts of the persons or entities concerned.
Hong Kong police in late August suspected the group was acting as a "foreign agent", and demanded more information from the group for investigation.
Under Article 43 of the National Security Law for Hong Kong, which was implemented June 2020, with reasonable needs, Hong Kong police can require organizations or agents to provide information as well as their assets, sources of income and expenditures in Hong Kong within a specified period for the prevention and investigation of an offense endangering national security.
ALSO READ: Liaison Office: Demise of anti-China groups inevitable
According to the Implementation Rules for Article 43, if these organizations or agents fail to comply with a police requirement to provide information as requested, they could be liable on conviction for a fine of HK$100,000 and face imprisonment for six months. Providing false, incorrect or incomplete information may incur a fine of HK$100,000 and imprisonment of two years.