Another article (1) quotes the Chief Inspector as saying: "If anyone uses such an object to attack a person, it could also be deemed an offensive weapon" but no mention of such an attack in this specific case.
Can anyone supplement my (long-ago) grade 11 law class: is mens rea alone isn't enough to be convicted of a crime?
Anyways, this guy gets out of his car and starts aproaching my car, and I get out of my car with the flashlight. Guy was easily 80-100 lbs larger than me. He immediately stepped back and accused me of being offensive. I responded with: you honked at me, gave me the finger, got out of your car at a light to confront me. I'm being defensive. You also have a significant size advantage. You have a problem with how I drive? Follow me to the police department and I'll tell them what I witnessed. Come a step closer, and you're going to the hospital, most likely.
Guy got back in his car and didnt follow up on my offer to speak with the police.
Used properly, a Maglite can be a great personal defense weapon. Swing toward the clavical (the area where neck meats shoulders). Again, hold by the bulb end; the shape will naturally help hold itself in your hand and youve got 3 C cell batteries at the other end which give a bit of heft to a swing.
Also an inexperienced person trying to use a blunt force weapon is more likely to become the victim.
I don't know about HK laws on laser pointers but here in Australia there are restrictions on laser pointers - anything >1mW requires a permit in most states, without a permit you're liable for possession of a prohibited weapon whether or not you planned to use it. Even <1mW, you may be required to have a reasonable excuse for possessing it if you take it into a public space (at least in some states, I haven't checked all of them).
I think at this point you should be looking into China's laws on laser pointers, not Hong Kong's.
Aside from that: HK has control over its statutes. https://www.elegislation.gov.hk/index/en/subject
Basic law (the part PRC plays a role) is the constitution. For an overview: https://www.basiclaw.gov.hk/en/facts/index.html
Aside, Here's a better article: http://www.thestandard.com.hk/section-news.php?id=210397
Even in light of these protests, it continues to seem fairly unlikely that Beijing will want to intervene militarily or impose direct controls over the HK government unless things heat up considerably more than they have already.
Some of them are protesting for reasonable demands (even universal suffrage is not too unrealistic a demand for Beijing IMO but any dose of separatism is definitely a no-no) but increasingly it looks like the majority are students venting their anger because they found themselves in a bad economic situation and have a long summer break to spare.
He's a member of the Astronomy Club. Also 7 Aug, the following night, is the "Seven Sister's Festival", a traditional festival in Hong Kong which stargazing is a common activity to do during.
Stargazing was a perfectly legal and reasonable intent. Not to say he was definitely not involved in the protests, but there was absolutely no evidence that he intended to use them as weapons.
The officers who approached him didn't show their warrant card at first. They also held his throat. Given the current situation in Hong Kong (triad members attacked citizens in public on 21 July and 5 Aug in 3 different places, and NO POLICE arrived at the scenes until well after the incidents, and so far no attacker is being prosecuted, despite the abundant video footage of the attacks), running away also was what sane people would do when they're threatened by 4 men with dubious identities.
This is from the article. The pointers were in his bag. He didn't point at anyone. Your comment implied that he did, and that's factually incorrect.
From my own observations, law enforcement in Mainland China is mostly reactive when it comes to product safely. They don't enforce a law unless something becomes an actual, big enough problem - especially if it threatens (the image of) the people in power.
A volunteer at Burning Man was blinded in one eye a few years ago: https://journal.burningman.org/2015/03/black-rock-city/tales...
The other diplomatic offices are consulates.
If it's anything like the Chinese Embassy in New Zealand, there's usually regular protests outside, for a variety of reasons. Their response would be to ignore them, like they usually do.
I spent two years in Hong Kong. There were frequent (weekly) protests at Chinese buildings (I remember one in particular that seemed to always have a crowd of people, in Sheung Wan, on Connaught Road I think?). It was always super peaceful, from both sides.
The Beijing liaison office. That's attracted a lot of protests in the past few weeks, and has had a temporary barricade around it for about as long.
HK is doomed for sure, but Taiwan isn't.
I'd be a little surprised if there haven't been similar at embassies in the US - perhaps they're just not attracting enough numbers to be widely reported?
It’s not that hard to prove intent if he is really innocent
If he’s really star gazing, why does he need 10 lasers? Show some evidence of your plan (where you are planning to go to star gaze, who you are going with (10 lasers are a bit too many for 1 person’s needs). Have you always been interested in Astronomy? It is rare (not impossible) for someone to suddenly find an interest in star gazing overnight.
Of course, it may be hard for police to actually prosecute him based on just intent - HK laws are still quite good. However, if he's been seen on the protest frontlines, plus ownership of lasers, it might make more of a case.
HK is not a place known for star gazers really - the light pollution is horrendous