Source: Hong Kong Information Services
The Department of Justice (DoJ) today published the Prosecutions Hong Kong 2019, which reviews its prosecution work last year.
The DoJ said it always attaches great importance to the discharge of its constitutional duty in criminal prosecutions, free from any interference. Prosecutorial decisions should be based on an objective assessment of all admissible evidence and applicable laws, and made strictly in accordance with the Prosecution Code.
The Director’s Overview of the report refuted allegations that the prosecution had been delinquent in prosecuting cases related to public order events.
In response to criticisms on the time taken for listing such cases for trials, it pointed out that the prosecution would usually have to apply for an adjournment at the first hearing for further investigations by the law enforcement agency.
Most defendants, in exercising their rights, would also apply for time to consider the available evidence, seek proper legal representations and legal advice before taking a plea.
It is therefore common that there would be a period of time, usually in months, in most of these cases before a plea could be taken and a further period of time before commencement of the trial.
The report also gives an account of the DoJ’s continued effort in promoting public understanding of the criminal justice system and other tasks completed in 2019.