Mayer Brown JSM represents TVB in its victory over Hong Kong’s Commissioner of Police
8 March 2016
Mayer Brown JSM secured a victory for Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB) in a court application brought against it by Hong Kong’s Commissioner of Police. The Commissioner had earlier sought a court order for TVB and four other media organisations to hand over “full and unedited” video and sound recordings made of the alleged assault by police officers on Tsang Kin-chiu during the Occupy Central protests in 2014. The Commissioner of Police also sought an order for TVB to reveal the identities and particulars of the journalists behind the recordings.
In rejecting the production order against TVB today, the High Court judge, the Honourable Madam Justice Judianna Barnes says she is “not satisfied that it is in the public interest to grant a production order of the full and unedited footage” as the recordings have already been uploaded and is available in the public domain. She also rejected the Commissioner of Police’s application for the identities of the journalists to be revealed, holding that they do not fall under the definition of “journalistic material” laid out in section 82 of the Interpretation & General Clauses Ordinance.
“The victory for our client is an important one for the freedom, integrity and impartiality of the press in Hong Kong. We could not be happier with the judgement,” says Jonathan Mok, Litigation partner, Mayer Brown JSM. “With few case precedents, the judgment may likely serve as a leading authority on the principle of press freedom and independence in Hong Kong in the future.”
Jonathan represented TVB without instructing counsel by virtue of his Higher Rights of Audience. He was assisted in the case by associate Raymond Chan.