As Chinese authorities move to clamp down on dissent in Hong Kong, a 31-year-old man has been sentenced to 21 months in jail by a court on Thursday for throwing eggs at a police headquarters during last year's protests.
Pun Ho-Chiu, nicknamed 'The Painter', was convicted of property damage, unauthorised assembly and seven charges of assault on police officers, reported Hong Kong Free Press.
Magistrate Winnie Lau Yee-wan, who sentenced Pun on Thursday, acknowledged that eggs were not 'weapons of mass destruction' and no officers were physically harmed, but added his actions may have encouraged others to follow suit.
She also described the defendant as having played a leading role in the protest and said that his actions have disrupted public order and safety and dirtied the premises.
Lau rejected the defence's questioning of police officers for failing to take photos of the stained riot shields and clothes and failing to record the incidents in police notebooks.
Pun took part in a demonstration outside the Wan Chai police headquarters in June last year, one of dozens of mass protests against a planned extradition bill.
Hong Kong Free Press reported that in September, a 26-year-old construction worker was convicted of rioting and common assault in relation to the same protest, and was later sentenced to four years in jail.
Pun's case comes as courts face a backlog of thousands of arrests related to last year's political unrest, during which Hong Kong was rocked by increasingly violent anti-government protests for months, reported CNN.
In a recent move to curb dissent in Hong Kong, the draconian national security law was enacted in June to crack down on protesters, which has only intensified the anti-government demonstrations.
The national security law imposed by Beijing on Hong Kong criminalises any act of secession (breaking away from China), subversion (undermining the power or authority of the central government), terrorism and collusion with foreign forces, with punishments of up to life in prison. It came into effect from July 1.