29 July 2013
A pregnant Mainland visitor was convicted of one count of making false representation and one count of obstructing members of the Immigration Service at the Sha Tin Magistrates' Court today (July 29). The defendant was sentenced to seven months' imprisonment for the first charge of making false representation and two weeks' imprisonment for the second charge of obstructing members of the Immigration Service. One week's sentence of the second charge will run concurrently with the sentence of the first charge, making a total sentence of seven months and one week's imprisonment.
On June 24, the 29-year-old defendant presented for arrival clearance at Lo Wu Control Point. As she was about to give birth, she was admitted to hospital. She subsequently gave birth to a baby girl on the same day. However, according to records, the defendant had been refused permission to land on June 22 at Lok Ma Chau Control Point in view of her doubtful purpose of visit. On that occasion, she claimed she was 24 weeks pregnant. The defendant was suspected of making false representation on her pregnancy to an immigration officer on June 22. Investigation was conducted. On July 24, the defendant reported bail to the Immigration Department but she once refused to leave the premises.
The defendant had earlier made false representation at Lok Ma Chau Control Point and later refused to leave the immigration premises upon reporting bail to the Immigration Department; thereby obstructing members of the Immigration Service. She pleaded guilty to both charges on July 29.
"Under the laws of Hong Kong, any person who makes false representation to an immigration officer commits an offence. Offenders are liable to prosecution and, upon conviction, subject to the maximum penalty of a fine of $150,000 and imprisonment for 14 years. It was also an offence in law for any person to assault, resist or obstruct any member of the Immigration Service. Offenders are liable to prosecution and, upon conviction, to a fine of $2,000 and imprisonment for six months. Furthermore, the Immigration Department will continue to step up checking at control points to prevent non-local pregnant women who do not have confinement booking from coming to Hong Kong," an Immigration Department spokesman said.