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Published: 14:14, November 29, 2022 | Updated: 09:44, November 30, 2022
Lai trial: DOJ to seek delay until NPCSC interpretation of NSL
By Oasis Hu
Published:14:14, November 29, 2022 Updated:09:44, November 30, 2022 By Oasis Hu

The Department of Justice plans to ask a Hong Kong court on Tuesday to postpone Jimmy Lai Chee-ying’s national security trial, scheduled to begin on Thursday.

The move comes a day after Hong Kong Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu asked the the Standing Committee of the nation’s top legislature – the National People’s Congress – for an interpretation of the National Security Law for Hong Kong.

CE John Lee Ka-chiu requested that the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPCSC) rule whether an overseas solicitor or barrister who is not qualified to “practice generally” in Hong Kong should be allowed to work on cases concerning offenses related to national security

Lee requested that the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPCSC) rule whether an overseas solicitor or barrister who is not qualified to “practice generally” in Hong Kong should be allowed to work on cases concerning offenses related to national security.

Lee made the request on Monday hours after the city’s top court ruled that Lai, founder of the now-defunct Apple Daily newspaper, could have British King’s Counsel Timothy Owen defend him in Lai’s upcoming trial. Lai faces four charges, including conspiracy to collude with foreign forces to endanger national security.

ALSO READ: Ruling on bid to stop Lai from hiring UK barrister adjourned

Speaking at a media session before the Executive Council meeting on Tuesday, Lee said that it is in the best interest of the case and the city to have the NPCSC interpret the law, and the NPCSC’s interpretation can help strengthen the mechanism to safeguard national security from different aspects.

Lee said the central government attaches great importance to the national security report he submitted on Monday, and that he believes the NPCSC will deal with the report as soon as possible.

READ MORE: National security at risk if UK counsel allowed for Lai

Lee stressed that lawyers qualified to practice in Hong Kong will not be affected.


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