The Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) on Saturday condemned the arrest in Hong Kong of an Internet radio disc jockey who launched a crowdfuding campaign for young protesters who wanted to leave the territory to study in Taiwan.
The arrest of Wan Yiu-sing, a D100 channel host known as “Giggs”, under Hong Kong’s National Security Law was “another instance of persecution” and “damaging to the stability of Hong Kong society,” the council said in a statement.
An administrator wrote on Giggs’ Facebook page on Saturday that Giggs, his wife and a female assistant were arrested that morning on charges of money laundering and providing financial support for “separatist” activities.
The charges, the latter of which fall under Article 21 of the National Security Law, are thought to be related to the radio shows that Giggs launched in February called A thousand fathers and mothers: Taiwan education aid program.
The South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported that Giggs’ show, which is also aired on his YouTube channel, used the San Francisco-based membership platform Patreon, where people could pay for subscriptions ranging from US$5 to US$35 to fund the show, as well as donate to the Taiwan program.
Hong Kong police have only confirmed that a man and two women, aged 50 to 53, were arrested in North Point on suspicion of violating the National Security Law and money laundering.
An anonymous source told the news Web site HK01 that the allegations include the embezzlement of funds and collaboration with a pro-Taiwan independence group.
Daniel Wong Kwok-tung, a lawyer and pro-democracy politician who is representing Giggs and his wife, called the charges against Giggs “severe” and “unthinkable,” and said he was waiting to see what evidence the police present.
The assistant was arrested on suspicion of money laundering and violation of the security law by inciting and funding secessionist activities, but Giggs’ wife had only been charged with money laundering.
Under Article 21, inciting, aiding or providing financial assistance for offenses of “secession” can be punished by imprisonment of up to five years in minor cases and up to 10 years in cases of a serious nature.
“We cannot reveal too many details for now, as an investigation is under way. But as the relevant laws have been clearly defined, do not break the law if you do not want to get arrested by police,” the SCMP quoted Hong Kong Police Commissioner Chris Tang as saying when asked about the case, which takes the total number of arrests under the National Security Law to 32.
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