New York's Supreme Court to Hear Oral Arguments in the Case Against Guan Liang and Accomplices for Physical Assault
(Clearwisdom.net) Clearwisdom correspondent Cai Ju reports from New York: On November 30, 2004, attorney Lana S. Han representing Falun Gong practitioners officially requested that the New York court hear the oral arguments regarding the case against Guan Liang and his accomplices, rather than have the matters at issue be decided without the argument.
On June 23, 2003, Guan Liang and other individuals with links to the Chinese Communist Party verbally and physically attacked Falun Gong practitioners outside the Yidong Restaurant in New York City. Attorney Han has requested for an oral argument and delivered the related legal documents to the court. Attorney Han received a court notice the next day, stating the New York Supreme Court will hear the oral arguments on December 20, 2004.
On June 22, 2004, Falun Gong practitioners filed a civil lawsuit against Guan Liang and his accomplices, charging them with six counts of action: battery, assault, conspiracy, defamation, intent to inflict emotional distress and violation of civil rights. On July 3, 2004, the defendants received summons regarding the case.
On June 23, 2003, Wang Yingfan, a departing UN ambassador from China and Zhang Hongxi, the Consul-General from the Chinese Consulate in New York City, attended a banquet held at the Yidong Restaurant in New York City's Chinatown. Falun Gong practitioners appealed outside the restaurant. Members of this group attacked the Falun Dafa practitioners, injuring practitioners Li Jun and Zhu Weiyong in the assault. The practitioners reported this to the police, and Liang was subsequently charged with third degree assault. On June 25, 2003, Liang was served with a criminal summons and the police recorded his crime. The District Attorney's Office for the Manhattan area also conducted a criminal investigation of the incident.
Guan Liang is the president of the United Chinese Association of Greater New York, Inc. (UCAGNY) and he has a history of harassing and interfering with Falun Gong practitioners' activities in New York. The UCAGNY has close connections with the Chinese consulate in New York and has been involved in numerous activities co-sponsored by consular-general Zhang Hongxi to attack and incite hatred against Falun Gong. Zhang Hongxi has slandered and attacked Falun Gong on many occasions and has constantly tried to pit the Chinese community against Falun Gong.
Ms. Xiong, a Falun Gong practitioner in New York, said that in the past five years, Jiang's faction has employed a combination of lies, propaganda, financial incentives and coercion to force Chinese people to participate in the persecution of Falun Gong. Jiang's faction also uses overseas pro-Communist Chinese community leaders to spread lies and incite discrimination against Falun Gong practitioners. The assault perpetrated by Liang and his accomplices is only one example of the Chinese government-ordered persecution of Falun Gong practitioners that has extended overseas. In the past five years, Falun Gong practitioners have tirelessly exposed the lies and clarified the truth with sincerity and kindness, and with peaceful and legal means. Falun Gong practitioners in the New York area will expose the truth behind the inciting of hatred committed by pro-Communist Chinese community leaders and Chinese consular officials, and they will bring the perpetrators to justice.
In the past five years, Falun Gong practitioners have tirelessly exposed the lies and clarified the truth with sincerity and kindness, and with peaceful and legal means. Falun Gong practitioners in the New York area will expose the truth behind the inciting of hatred committed by pro-Party Chinese community leaders and Chinese consular officials, and they will bring the perpetrators to justice.
U.S officials inquiring about the details of the case have expressed great concern regarding this attack. New Jersey Senator Lautenberg said, "The beating of Falun Gong practitioners in New York is absolutely unacceptable." Senator Lautenberg thinks it constitutes a hate crime, saying, "If the Chinese government really took part in this and is interfering with freedom of belief in our land, it absolutely cannot be tolerated."
The assault was mentioned in U.S. Congressional Resolution 304, which was passed on October 4, 2004, "WHEREAS on June 23, 2003, Falun Gong practitioners were attacked outside a Chinese restaurant in New York City by local United States-based individuals with reported ties to the Chinese Government." The resolution asks that "the [U.S.] President should...issue an official public demarche, a formal protest, with the Chinese Foreign Ministry in response to the repeated violations by the Chinese Government of basic human rights protected in international covenants to which the People's Republic of China is a signatory; and...the Attorney General should investigate reports that Chinese consular officials in the United States have committed illegal acts while attempting to intimidate or inappropriately influence Falun Gong practitioners or local elected officials and, in consultation with the Secretary of State, determine an appropriate legal response; and...officials of local governments in the United States should...report incidents of pressure or harassment by agents of the People's Republic of China to Members of Congress, the Attorney General and the Secretary of State."
Attorney Han said that Guan Liang and his accomplices must be brought to justice because they willfully harassed, threatened and inflicted harm upon Falun Gong practitioners. Their use of violence against peaceful Falun Gong practitioners cannot be tolerated in any civilized society governed by the rule of law.