HK journalists jailed in China for 'illegal business'

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Two journalists who worked on political magazines in Hong Kong have been jailed in mainland China for running an illegal business.

Publisher Wang Jiamin and editor Guo Zhongxiao worked on New-Way Monthly and Multiple Face, which published gossipy news about mainland leaders.

The articles were published in Hong Kong, which has greater media freedoms, but copies were sent to the mainland.

They were arrested in 2014 in Shenzhen, and both men pleaded guilty in court.

Wang was jailed for five years and three months, while Guo was jailed for two years and three months and is expected to be released soon for time served.

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Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post said the defence had argued that only eight copies of the magazine were ever sent to China, and only to friends of its publisher.

The sentencing follows the disappearance of five booksellers connected to a Hong Kong publisher and bookshop which also produced items critical of China’s leaders.

The men later turned up in Chinese detention – one is still being held.

The Hong Kong Journalist Association said the sentencing was a blow to Hong Kong’s freedom of speech, and that China appeared to be cracking down on the media.

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