Police make arrest over suspected anthem booing

Police say they have arrested a 40-year-old man on suspicion of insulting the national anthem as crowds of people gathered in a shopping mall to watch an Olympic broadcast.

Officers alleged that the suspect, who told them he was a journalist, waved a colonial flag and incited others to boo and chant slogans when the March of the Volunteers was played during a televised medal ceremony on Monday evening.

Large numbers of people had been at the APM Mall in Kwun Tong to see Hong Kong fencer Cheung Ka-long defeat defending champion Daniele Garozzo of Italy in the men’s foil final.

Police said they arrested their suspect in the Kwai Tsing area on Friday afternoon and seized 10 colonial flags.

Acting superintendent Kwok Ching-yee said the arrest was made after officers studied CCTV and online videos of the alleged booing.

Legislation making it a criminal offence to mock the anthem came into effect on June 12 last year.

Offenders risk fines of up to HK$50,000 and three years in prison.

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Last updated: 2021-07-30 HKT 18:52