Extradition law changes are urgent: Carrie Lam - RTHK
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Extradition law changes are urgent: Carrie Lam

2019-03-19 HKT 11:56
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  • Extradition law changes are urgent: Carrie Lam
Chief Executive Carrie Lam said on Tuesday that Legco must approve planned changes to the city's extradition legislation before its summer recess in July if Hong Kong is to deal with a request by Taiwan for a murder suspect to be handed over to the island.

The suspect, a young Hong Kong man, is accused of killing his Hong Kong girlfriend in Taiwan last year before flying back to the SAR.

Speaking to reporters before going into the weekly Executive Council meeting, Lam said it is urgent that amendments are made to the SAR's Fugitive Offenders Ordinance to enable the government to arrange one-off extradition deals with places Hong Kong doesn't have a formal treaty with.

Lam said this urgency is because there is a "time constraint" regarding the Taiwan murder case, without explaining what she was referring to.

She said if lawmakers don't approve the planned legal changes before their summer break, justice will not be served and this will go against the wishes of the murder victim's parents and some lawmakers.

“We have a case right in front of us which has caused a lot of public anxiety and a lot of anger, especially amongst the parents of the deceased. So we need to do this expeditiously in order to have the legal framework and the authority to deal with that particular case”, she said.

“The amendments are intended to pursue judicial justice in criminal cases and also to protect the public because if there are serious crimes, offenders will abscond and come to Hong Kong. They are a threat to public safety so we have reviewed the existing legislation and acknowledged that there is a loophole and the intention of the amendments is to plug this loophole”, Lam said.

She noted that the business sector is concerned about the legal changes, but stressed there are sufficient human rights and procedural safeguards in place.

When asked if the government would make any changes to the proposed amendments to address concerns raised, the CE said it is up to the security secretary to decide.