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Hearing arrangements to be reviewed

Chief Justice Andrew Cheung has instructed that the Judiciary should immediately review the overall arrangements of handling cases involving a large number of litigants and observers at all levels of courts.   The Judiciary made the statement today in response to enquiries on the arrangements for the hearing of a case involving 47 defendants at the West Kowloon Magistrates' Courts, emphasising that the review is subject to the safeguarding of the due administration of justice.        The statement pointed out that the courts must adjudicate cases in accordance with the law and court procedures, adding that the courts have always sought to complete the hearing of each case as soon as practicable to ensure efficient administration of justice.   Regarding the case in question, the Judiciary explained that all 47 defendants must be heard before the same magistrate according to court procedures as they were charged with the same offence under the same case.   The case was first

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Airport runway site cluster detected

(To watch the full press briefing with sign language interpretation, click here.)   The Centre for Health Protection today said it is investigating 28 additional COVID-19 cases, of which 26 are locally transmitted.   At a press briefing this afternoon, the centre’s Principal Medical & Health Officer Dr Albert Au said five new cases were found among workers at the Hong Kong International Airport Three-runway System construction site.   He said a total of nine cases have been recorded at the site.   Seven of the cases work under a single contract, while the other two patients work for another contract, Dr Au added.   “According to information provided by the Airport Authority and the contractors of different companies, their workers do not mix together and they work in different areas or parts of the reclamation island.   “Because the island is a very huge area and it is divided into different zones in which different contractors work in different areas, so the possibility of mixing between the workers of different companies in the construction site is very minimal.   “I think most of the risk is from sharing common facilities within the construction site such as the containers.”   Dr Au said about 6,000 workers will be required to undergo compulsory testing.   Among the local cases, six have unknown sources of infection and there are more than 40 preliminary positive cases.   Additionally, 11 buildings in Yau Tsim Mong District with sewage samples that tested positive have been included in the compulsory testing notice.   People who had been at those buildings for more than two hours from January 17 to 30 have to undergo testing by February 2.   If people subject to compulsory testing have previously undergone testing between January 28 and 30, they would be taken to have complied with the requirements set out in the notice.   The Government will set up mobile specimen collection stations at Sycamore Playground in Mong Kok and Lai On Estate in Sham Shui Po tomorrow, while the service period of the mobile specimen collection station at Man Wui Street, Ferry Point in Jordan will be extended to February 1.   For information and health advice on COVID-19, visit the Government's dedicated webpage.
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