Pro-democracy activists Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow, who stormed Civic Square and triggered the Occupy protests in Hong Kong in September 2014, were given jail terms of six to eight months by the city’s Court of Appeal on Thursday.
The appeal court jailed the pro-democracy leaders for “unlawful assembly”, which led to the 79-day Umbrella Movement starting from September 28, 2014, RTHK reported.
Wong, 20, was jailed for six months while Chow, 26, and Law, 24, were jailed for seven and eight months respectively.
Wong told a hundred of supporters in the lobby of the court building that he had no regrets about taking part in Occupy.
“I still believe that time is on our side and one day Hong Kong will be a place where we can determine our own future,” he said.
In August last year, the trio were given community-service orders by Eastern Magistracy for illegal assembly. The Secretary for Justice later filed an appeal to give the three former student leaders heavier punishment.
On August 31, 2014, China’s State Council issued a white paper on the practice of the “one country, two systems” policy in Hong Kong and proposed political reform for the city’s 2017 chief executive election. The proposal was criticized by Hong Kong’s pro-democracy camp as a “fake universal suffrage” package that would allow Beijing to screen the candidates prior to a public vote.
The launch of the white paper led to the outburst of the Umbrella Movement on September 28, 2014, and the veto of Beijing’s proposal in the Hong Kong Legislative Council in June 2015.