The snail-paced NatSec case

Even NatSec judges are getting impatient with the prosecutors apparently dragging out the case of the pro-democrats who tried to win an election, with masses of non-specific evidence and a trial estimated to take over 90 days – but not until after late January. Or later. Summary from the estimable Su Xinqi… 

…nearly 3 months since the 17 [pleading not-guilty] defendants in the 47 activists “conspiracy to subversion” case [was] last in court and it’s been 21 months since the NSL offence was first charged, but time seems [to have frozen] as disputes still surround what exactly [Justice Dept] is alleging.

Read down for judge’s comments and a guest appearance by Regina Ip.

Anyone who flicks through the Standard knows the paper loves eye-catching property transactions. Today it gives front-page treatment to Beijing’s locally based NatSec agency purchase of a five-bedroom 7,170 sq ft villa at Mont Rouge just north of Kowloon Tong, including a 5,000 sq ft garden and 700 sq ft terrace. For HK$508 million.

A few questions… First – yes it’s big and oh-so ‘luxury’, but is someone padding this price a bit? Half a billion seems kind of steep, especially for Kowloon-side. Second, what on earth does a humble Office for Safeguarding National Security want it for? Having friends over for barbecues? Third, are they spending Mainland or Hong Kong taxpayers’ money?

Is it illegal to call for Hong Kong Stairhood?

Following more workplace deaths, Transit Jam says Hong Kong’s construction sites have worse safety records than Qatar’s, not least because of…

…the lax enforcement culture and casual disregard for human life shown by Hong Kong’s gluttonous developers.

(And that’s before he starts on the government.)

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7 Responses to The snail-paced NatSec case

  1. Mary Melville says:

    Re Mont Rouge villa for NS honcho , so much for the Common Prosperity pledge just a few weeks ago. Some investors in other homes withing the compound may be less than thrilled with the no doubt additional surveillance their new neigbour will import.

  2. HK-Cynic says:

    Easy to blame it on “developers” writ large. Could it be that some developers do it right whereas others are abysmal in that area? Would be interesting to see injuries / deaths by developer and/or construction company. And compare those tallies to total hours worked, otherwise the comparison won’t be valid.

  3. Futility Limited says:

    James Ockenden is right on the mark. A prime example of the lax attitude towards worker safety in Hong Kong is the ‘no interest’ attitude to unexploded ordnance (UXO) risk at all levels of the HK construction industry and there’s a lot of UXO risk in certain areas of HK.

    In 2018 after UXO were found at a high-profile construction site on the Island I spent quite a bit of time providing advice to a concerned HK construction maincon; a household name in fact. The advice was free (more fool me) in the expectance that it would lead to some business. After several weeks they went quiet after realising that managing UXO risk might actually cost money.

    I later found out that they decided to solve their problem ‘in-house’ by purchasing a few metal detectors and having a bash themselves. I was told they eventually gave up after deciding that the metal detectors were useless because they kept, er …detecting, metal.

  4. steve says:

    Crap, that’s in my old neighborhood (resided in faculty housing): “…steep, especially for Kowloon-side…”–ouch, that hurts. It’s the suburbs, where the rich folks move when they want to live low-rise with a slower vibe. Now the place is going to be full of black bulletproof SUVs.

  5. Estate Agent says:

    To be fair, only utter idiots would buy a tedious Milton Keynes-esq property in Kowloon Tong worth more than a Scottish valley or the southern border of a Canadian province.

    Utter Idiots + Loads of Money + No understanding of tasteful global property. Mmm… who fits that profile?

  6. Still drunk from the Sevens says:

    Sweet Caroline. I feel inclined… we will it up with.. mumble… how can I …

    Touching ME

    Touching YOU

  7. so says:

    A relative (who needs the money) is a construction foreman via a HK sub-contractor who doesn’t give a fig about safety and that’s on a good day.

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