Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong and three other activists were sentenced by a Hong Kong court Thursday to up to 10 months in prison for attending an unauthorized rally held on June 4 to commemorate the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown.
Wong, Lester Shum, Tiffany Yuen and Jannelle Leung were handed down the sentences after pleading guilty to the charge at the same Hong Kong court last Friday. They were found to have participated in the rally even though it had been banned by police citing public safety and health concerns amid the coronavirus pandemic.
District Court judge Stanley Chan said the defendants knowingly took part in the unauthorized assembly and posted photos on social media. Chan added their participation was premeditated, and that the harsh sentences were due to their lack of genuine remorse and to deter others from attending such assemblies.
Wong, who is already serving time after receiving a prison sentence of 13 and a half months and another for four months over two pro-democracy assemblies in 2019, will serve the 10 months' prison term consecutively for being a repeat offender, the judge said.
Shum was sentenced to six months in prison, while Yuen and Leung were handed down prison terms of four months.
The annual June 4 candlelight vigil at Victoria Park was banned by police for the first time last year, but thousands of people reportedly attended it nonetheless.
Nearly two dozen other activists, including organizers of the event, former lawmakers and media mogul Jimmy Lai, were also indicted for hosting, taking part in and inciting others to join the rally.
Wong, Shum, Yuen and Lai are separately charged with violating the sweeping national security law, which carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.