Before then, capital punishment had been the usual sentence given since the establishment of the Crown Colony of Hong Kong for offences such as murder, kidnapping ending in death, and piracy. The last execution in Hong Kong was carried out on 16 November 1966 when Wong Kai-Kei, age 26, was hanged at Stanley Prison. Following this, the death penalty was suspended. The Governor of Hong Kong would as a matter of course commute the sentences of those convicted under the death penalty to life imprisonment under the Royal Prerogative of mercy. In April 1993, capital punishment was officially abolished in Hong Kong. Since then, life imprisonment has been the most severe punishment in Hong Kong.
^"Demise of the Death Penalty", South China Morning Post, 23 March 2004. Official Notebook of Mr R.V Brimmicombie-Wood recording executions in 1966. On display at Hong Kong Correctional Services Museum.