Beijing’s Secret Police Conquer and Rule Hong Kong

Physically Hong Kong looks as it always did. But it has changed irreversibly. The city was once proud of its distinct British-derived legal system, which guaranteed the rights of residents—and provided a solid foundation for its commercial glory. That has been swept away. Hong Kong’s old legal rules no longer apply. Legislative interpretation will be up to China. Chinese security agents will operate openly and officially in Hong Kong. Personnel will employ surveillance, including wiretaps, against suspects, who can be held without bail. Trials can be conducted in secret. Cases can be decided by judges rather than juries. Special jurists will be appointed by the territory’s chief executive, who in turn is effectively chosen by China. And offenders will in most cases be extradited to the mainland, where they will be tried and (inevitably) convicted and imprisoned.

BY Doug Bandow for Foreign Policy