Wednesday, October 20, 2021

US-born lawyer keeps faith after HK security law arrest

HONG KONG: A lawyer who has lived and practiced in Hong Kong for decades, John Clancey has seen the inside of a few police stations — but he never imagined he would be the one in a cell.

Clancey, a 79-year-old US citizen and former priest, was the first foreign national detained under a sweeping national security law Beijing imposed in Hong Kong last year.

“In the past, I used to visit people in detention and I gave them legal advice,” he told AFP on Tuesday from his office in the heart of Hong Kong’s main business district. “But this is my first time in detention and police custody.”

Clancey was one of 55 activists arrested and later bailed last week on a charge of “subversion” — one of the new national security crimes. “I was very surprised. Not terrified, no fear,” he recalled before citing a favourite Gospel verse: “In perfect love, there is no fear.”

That Clancey might look to the Bible for strength is little surprise. He is a prominent member of the city’s Catholic community and a well-known legal activist. His office mug carries a verse from Romans: “God loves you most”.

Source: The News

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