Hong Kong activist shot on National Day fails to show up for court

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A Hong Kong activist who was shot at point blank range by a police officer during clashes at a National Day protest last year failed to turn up at court on Tuesday, according to local media.

The South China Morning Post reported that 19-year-old Tsang Chi-kin, who had been charged with rioting and two charges of assaulting a police officer, didn’t turn up at court, after his lawyer said the defendant would plead guilty.

The near-fatal shooting was captured on film, which showed a group of black-clad protesters fighting an officer to the ground, before another officer arrived at the scene and shot Tsang in the chest.

In October, Tsang and was one of four activists who unsuccessfully sought refuge in the US consulate.

Tsang told SCMP that the US rejection was akin to being “plunged from heaven to hell,” saying his motivation was fear of being charged under the new national security law, which comes with hefty sentencing.

SCMP reported that Tsang had been in hiding since the failed asylum bid, for fear that he would face additional charges of collusion with foreign forces.

A crackdown on dissidents is now a daily norm in the city, due to the breadth of the new national security law, which targets separatism, subversion, collusion with foreign forces and terrorism.

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