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Joshua Wong receives second jail time period over 2014 protests

Joshua Wong receives second jail time period over 2014 protests

On Wednesday, the Court of First Instance sentenced Raphael Wong and Joshua Wong to 4.5 months and three months in prison respectively over the involvement in the clearance of a Mong Kok Occupy site in 2014.

Raphael Wong Ho-ming, vice-chairman of the League of Social Democrats (left) and Joshua Wong, Demosisto party secretary general speak outside the High Court in Hong Kong on January 17, 2018.

The prison term dealt the latest blow to Wong, who was sentenced in August to six months in prison after he was found guilty of unlawful assembly.

Wednesday's sentencing came after the High Court heard earlier that the activists remained in an "occupied" zone in Mong Kok on November 26, 2014 even after bailiffs announced the court injunction to the protesters and tried to clear the street with police assistance. Both were denied bail.

The umbrellas carried by the protesters became a symbol for the democracy movement in Hong Kong.

The "Umbrella Movement" brought parts of Hong Kong to a standstill for more than two months, as tens of thousands of mostly student activists called on Beijing to allow fully free elections of future leaders in the semiautonomous Chinese city. Raphael Wong shouted as he was led away.

Wong Ching-tak, the current union president, said the union's role in social movements and the threat of arrest had put off many applicants, stating that "not everyone is willing to stand at the front". "The only appropriate punishment for Mr Wong is immediate imprisonment".

While a spirited young generation has given Hong Kong's flagging push for democracy fresh impetus, some 100 key activists have, or could be, jailed in upcoming trials, in what critics say is an attempt to counter the movement's momentum.

The former head of radical group Hong Kong Indigenous, Edward Leung, 26, faces four charges, including rioting and incitement to riot, for his role in a 2016 Lunar New Year protest that turned violent when masked activists tossed bricks at police and burned trash cans. He was bailed pending appeal, and awaits a decision on that verdict.

Hong Kong has been governed by a "one country, two systems" agreement since 1997 when Britain handed the territory back to China.

The courts will decide on the appeal for the separate charges at a later date.

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