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Benny Tai Yiu-ting

Former Associate Professor of Law at the University of Hong Kong and Co-founder of Occupy Central

Date of Birth:

July 12, 1964




NSL 47; Scholar

Behind Bars Since

February 28, 2021


Benny Tai was an associate professor of law at the University of Hong Kong, where he studies constitutional development and the rule of law. 

He is one of the "Occupy trio" who co-founded the Occupy Central with Love and Peace in 2013 as a plan to achieve universal suffrage through non-violent civil disobedience. In 2014, after student activists stormed the forecourt of the government headquarters in response to PRC Congress' election reform proposal, Tai announced the official start of Occupy Central, which later evolved into the Umbrella Movement. After 79 days of occupation, the Occupy Central trio, along with 62 other key figures turned themselves in to the police, admitting to taking part in an unauthorized assembly as planned. In April 2019, Tai was found guilty of conspiracy to cause public nuisance and inciting others to cause public nuisance and was sentenced to 16 months in prison. [1

After the Umbrella Movement, Tai initiated voting schemes and training to strategize the pro-democracy camp's participation in the local elections. [2] In 2020, Tai published an article on Apple Daily detailing 10 steps to "mutual destruction," which strives to secure 35 seats at the 2020 legislative council election to cause a government shutdown and foreign sanctions on China. [3] Tai, along with five pro-democracy activists, convened the unofficial democratic primaries, joined by 50 candidates. 

On Jan. 6, 2021, Tai along with 54 other pro-democracy candidates was arrested for organizing and participating in the democratic primaries. He has been detained since Feb. 28, 2021. 

Benny Tai Yiu-ting


Conspiracy to commit subversion under National Security Law for organizing the 2020 democratic primaries.

  • 6 January 2021: Arrested with 54 other pro-democracy activists.

  • 28 February 2021: Officially charged 47 activists among the 53 arrested in January.

  • Pleaded guilty; Trial ongoing.

Illegal election spending after placing advertisements in local newspapers ahead of the 2016 Legislative Council election.

  • 25 April 2022: Pleaded guilty.

  • 24 May 2022: Sentenced to 10 months in prison.

Conspiracy to commit public nuisance and inciting others to commit public nuisance at the 2014 Umbrella Movement.

  • 24 April 2019: Sentenced to 16 months in prison.

Personal Updates

Mailing Address

PO Box 422, Ma On Shan, New Territories, Hong Kong

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