Fugitive law revision to be gazetted

March 26, 2019

The Chief Executive in Council today endorsed the submission of the Fugitive Offenders & Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Legislation (Amendment) Bill 2019 to the Legislative Council.


Speaking at a press conference today, Secretary for Security John Lee said the bill will address the Taiwan homicide case and plug a loophole in Hong Kong’s legal system.


He said: “The Hong Kong Government can only try its best to ensure justice is done. I have no reason to suspect that any jurisdiction will not like to see offenders of serious crimes escape justice and we have indeed received requests three times from the Taiwan side.”


Chief Executive Carrie Lam thanked various sectors for giving their views on the proposal.


She said the proposal showed the Government’s determination on enhancing Hong Kong’s mechanism for juridical assistance and fighting crimes.


The proposal was drafted with references from other jurisdictions such as the UK and Canada, which have been practising similar case-based surrender arrangements for years, she added.


The bill proposes to differentiate case-based surrender arrangements from general long-term surrender arrangements.


Case-based surrender arrangements will only be considered if there are no applicable long-term surrender arrangements.


Thirty-seven offences in the Fugitive Offenders Ordinance will be covered, while nine offences will not be dealt with under case-based surrender arrangements.


The bill will be gazetted on March 29 and tabled at LegCo on April 3.


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