Hong Kong court rejects US lawyer’s appeal over police assault, judge rules guidelines on force ‘not relevant’

The High Court has dismissed an American lawyer’s appeal against his conviction and sentence for assaulting a police officer. The judge ruled that police guidelines on use of force were “irrelevant” to the case, which she said happened “during a most violent chapter in the history of Hong Kong.”

Samuel Phillip Bickett, a former compliance director at the Bank of America, was convicted in June 2021 of assaulting a plain-clothes police officer and was sentenced to four and a half months of jail.

High Court. Photo: Kelly Ho/HKFP.

The confrontation between Bickett and Senior Constable Yu Shu-sang, part of which was recorded on video, occurred in Causeway Bay MTR station on December 7, 2019, towards the end of the protests and unrest that rocked Hong Kong that year.

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