Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai has had his bail revoked after prosecutors succeeded in asking the city’s highest court to send him back to detention.
Lai had been granted bail on Dec. 23 after three weeks in custody on charges of fraud and endangering national security. His appeal hearing is slated for Feb. 1.
The court said Thursday that it was "reasonably arguable" that the previous judge's decision was erroneous and that the order of granting bail was invalid.
Hong Kong pro-democracy activist and media tycoon Jimmy Lai, arrives the Court of Final Appeal in Hong Kong, Thursday, Dec. 31, 2020. Hong Kong government prosecutors appeal against the bail granted to Lai. Lai was granted bail on Dec 23, nearly three weeks after he was remanded in custody over fraud and national security-related charges.(AP Photo/Kin Cheung)
Lai was charged with fraud on Dec. 3 for allegedly violating the lease terms for office space for the Next Digital, the media company he founded. He was later charged again on Dec. 12 under the sweeping national security law imposed by Beijing on suspicion of colluding with foreign forces and endangering national security.
Lai is among a string of pro-democracy activists and supporters arrested by Hong Kong police in recent months as authorities step up their crackdown on dissent in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory.