TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Kong Linlin (孔琳琳), a journalist from Chinese state broadcaster CCTV, was convicted Friday (Nov. 29) for slapping a Hong Kong student during the 2018 Conservative Party conference in Birmingham, U.K.
Kong was given a 12-month conditional discharge and ordered by Birmingham Magistrates' Court to pay US$2,740 in victim surcharge and compensation to 24-year-old Enoch Lieu. Kong is expected to appeal after claiming that Lieu manhandled her first.
The news anchor attended the Conservatives' annual conference in September, 2018, but lashed out at pro-Hong Kong human rights panelists for "trying to separate China." Kong lost her temper and slapped Lieu when he asked her to leave the convention center, reported Liberty Times.
The court said the slap was heard by a delegate eight seats away. Judge Shamim Qureshi added that Kong "lost her cool professionalism as a journalist and instead became an impassioned heckler" in the heat of the moment.
CCTV has since responded to the court's decision and said any attempt to undermine China's territories would have consequences. Some Chinese netizens referred to Kong as a "heroine" and "China's megastar."