On August 31, 2021, at around 9 p.m., Hong Kong police arrested Leung Chi-Hung, a reporter for the online news outlet Egg Egg Club, while dispersing crowds outside of the Prince Edward metro station, according to news reports.
Leung, who was filming police operations at the station on the two-year anniversary of the “831 incident,” named for the date when riot police stormed onto a subway train and indiscriminately beat passengers after earlier clashes with pro-democracy protesters, was charged with disorderly conduct after he allegedly cursed at the police officers who ordered him to leave the station, according to those reports. According to the reports, he was taken to the Mong Kok police station.
Egg Egg Club released a statement confirming that its reporter had been arrested for “behaving in a disorderly manner in a public place.”
In response to CPJ’s email requesting comment, the police public relations branch confirmed the arrest of a 34-year-old man whose surname is Leung on suspicion of verbally insulting officers.
Leung was released on bail at around 5 p.m. on September 1, according to Egg Egg Club. According to a video posted by Leung on the outlet’s Facebook page on September 2, police confiscated his equipment as evidence.
In a separate incident on August 30, Leung Pak-kin, a former reporter for the online newspaper Rice Post who had witnessed and videotaped the “831 incident,” said that earlier in the month he had received a threatening letter with a razor blade in the mail, according to news reports and Leung’s Facebook post. The letter warned him to keep quiet about the event or his and his family’s safety could be in danger, those reports said. He did not report the letter to police, according to a news report.
China has been the world’s worst imprisoner of journalists for two straight years, with at least 47 journalists in jail in 2020, according to a CPJ report.