Verdict in Cardinal Zen’s trial expected 

The verdict in the trial of Cardinal Joseph Zen, the 90-year-old former bishop of Hong Kong, is expected to be handed down tomorrow (Friday).

He is one of six pro-democracy advocates arrested under Hong Kong’s national security law.

All six have pleaded not guilty to charges that they failed to register a fund that helped Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters pay for their legal fees and medical treatments.

Senior Counsel Robert Pang defended Zen in court and argued last month that imposing “criminal sanctions on the failure to register must be an infringement of freedom of association.”

Pang has also represented Jimmy Lai, a Catholic pro-democracy advocate and former publisher of Hong Kong’s Apple Daily who has been jailed since December 2020 for violating the same national security law.

Lai’s trial is scheduled for December 1.

In a recent interview, Hong Kong’s current bishop said that the Catholic Church has “not remained idle” in the face of challenges posed by the national security law.