World

Swiss photographer on trial in Hong Kong over protest clash

HONG KONG: A Swiss photographer charged with public disorder went on trial in Hong Kong yesterday, with prosecutors accusing him of enabling an assault on a Chinese mainlander during last year's democracy protests.

Mr Marc Progin, a long-time Hong Kong resident, pleaded not guilty to "aiding and abetting public disorder", a charge which could see him jailed for up to a year.

On Oct 4, Mr Progin, 74, was photographing an altercation outside the offices of American bank JP Morgan Chase.

JP Morgan employee Lin Nan was surrounded by angry pro-democracy protesters as he declared "we are all Chinese".

In video footage that went viral, Mr Progin could be seen closing the door to the bank in order to better photograph the unfolding events, closing off Mr Lin's exit route.

Seconds later, the banker was punched repeatedly by a masked protester, who has not been caught.

The footage sparked widespread anger in China, and Hong Kong officials brought a prosecution against Mr Progin. - AFP

WORLD