The District Court on Wednesday jailed a barista for four and a half years over her involvement in an anti-government protest in Mong Kok two years ago, in which she helped light a large fire on the street.
Siu Lok-ting, 27, was earlier convicted of two counts of arson and one count of rioting.
Passing sentence, judge Frankie Yiu noted the offenses – committed on September 22, 2019 – were serious, as the fire Siu helped light had spread across two to three lanes.
He also noted the fire had blocked the junction of Prince Edward Road West and Nathan Road, and could have seriously hurt people.
He said he's taken into account the fact that the fire was quickly put out by firemen, the protest was not thoroughly planned, and demonstrators did not charge a police cordon or throw petrol bombs.
Yiu also noted the defendant suffers from depression and anxiety, which the defense counsel said might have affected her judgement at the scene, and that she has expressed regret and promised to be responsible to society.
The judge also said the defendant admitted various allegations during the trial and saved the court a lot of time.
Yiu said he therefore reduced the sentences for each count by six months, and allowed the prison terms to run concurrently.
As Siu was being taken away, her partner shouted, "The sentence is not long, let's get married when you come out", while her parents burst out in tears.