Ms. Tang Yiwen Files Lawsuit against Guangdong Province Reeducation-through-Labor Bureau and Guangzhou City Chatou Women's Labor Camp
Falun Dafa practitioner Ms. Tang Yiwen was denied a passport application three times.
Starting from as early as May 2004, after Ms. Tang's passport application was denied for the second time, she and her family wrote letters to Guangdong Province Public Security Department, Guangdong Province Political and Judiciary Committee as well as Guangdong Province "610 Office."
On June 21, 2004, Ms. Tang and her family traveled 400 kilometers from Maoming City, Guangdong Province to the Passport Center at Guangzhou City Police Department Haizhu Branch and submitted the application for the third time. The Deputy Director, Ms. Chen Runling, received them and said that they checked the computer records and found the statement "this person's movements are restricted" under Ms. Tang's name. Therefore, she could not be issued a passport. This was the third time her passport application was denied.
On the same afternoon, Ms. Tang went to Guangdong Province Public Security Department, which makes the final decision about issuing a passport, and asked about the letter she had written to the Department Chief a month earlier. The secretary said that they had received the letter but had not passed it on to the Department Chief because the Chief was busy.
On the same evening, Ms. Tang's uncle received a phone call from the Guangdong Province "610 Office" asking, "Did your niece go to Guangzhou?" The voice was nervous and anxious. It is likely that as soon as Ms. Tang left the Passport Center and the Public Security Department, they called the "610 Office" right away.
On June 22, 2004, Ms. Tang went to the Guangdong Province Political and Judiciary Committee to check if they had received the letter she wrote a month earlier. The receptionist said that they had received it. When asked about why they did not reply, the receptionist said that they were busy and that they were having a meeting. She said that they would reply to her later. Next, Ms. Tang went to the Province Appeals Office, and the receptionist didn't even dare to receive her. She went there again and told them that she just wanted to pass a letter to Zhang Dejiang, the Guangdong Province Party Secretary, and they accepted the letter reluctantly.
Since Ms. Tang Yiwen's release from Chatou Women's Labor Camp at the end of last August, she and her family have tried various legal measures to safeguard their rights. After a few months of effort, an attorney agreed to help with her lawsuit. However, a few days before signing the contract with the attorney, Ms. Tang was abducted again and sent to a brainwashing center by force.
After she broke out of the brainwashing center, she continued to write to the Beijing Ministry of Justice and Guangzhou Legal Help Center and law professors to further expose the persecution she had suffered. She had done a lot of work in seeking confirmation and verification of evidence. By the end of June, the documents and medical certificates were ready. According to the attorney's suggestion, on June 23, 2004, Ms. Tang and her father went to the Guangdong Province Intermediate People's Court.
Seeing Falun Gong practitioners taking the initiative to come to court, the judges were taken by surprise. They shirked duties one after another. Finally a judge received them, and asked them if they wanted to file a criminal or civil lawsuit. Considering the relatively greater difficulty of a criminal lawsuit, they decided to go forward with a civil lawsuit first. The judge commented that both kinds [of lawsuits] were difficult and there was almost no hope to win their case. Ms. Tang insisted that as a citizen, she had the right to file a lawsuit. Facing the man in his 70's and his daughter who had suffered so much from torture, the judge seemed to be moved. He said, "If you are strong and persistent enough, you should start from the local court, it would be easier this way."
The next day, Ms. Tang and her father visited Guangzhou Haizhu District People's Procuratorate, where her permanent address was registered. A kind-hearted procurator received them and listened to Ms. Tang's story in her own words for a long time. She was moved by the Falun Gong practitioners' kindness and uncompromising courage, and suggested to them that they submit the petition at Baiyun District, because the Chatou Labor Camp where Ms. Tang was detained was in Guangzhou Baiyun District.
On June 25, 2004, Ms. Tang and her father went to Guangzhou Baiyun District Procuratorate. The staff agreed to process the case orally. So on the same afternoon, they went through their indictment again and did a final check before they mailed it to "Guangzhou Baiyun District People's Procuratorate, Guangdong Province, People's Republic of China".
The contents of the indictment include:
1. Accusation of the illegal sentencing by Guangdong Province Reeducation-through-Labor Bureau;
2. Accusation of the torture and extended term of detention by Guangdong Province Guangzhou Chatou Female Labor Camp;
3. Accusation of the illegal abduction by Guangzhou Haizhu District "610 Office" and Haizhu District Police Department.
On June 28, 2004, the Procuratorate staff called and told them that they had received the indictment and they were ready to process it. The attorney said that according to the law, this kind of lawsuit has a minimum compensation of 100,000 Yuan. Ms. Tang and her family members said that money was not the reason for their lawsuit. If it were, considering the persecution Ms. Tang had suffered, the compensation would have been many times larger.
According to the National Law of Compensation, the Procuratorate must give a written reply to the plaintiff regarding the lawsuit and whether the case was going to be put on record or not in fifteen days. But Ms. Tang and her family members had not heard anything after thirty days. They called Baiyun District Procuratorate. The staff replied, "We've read your indictment; you'd better withdraw it."
A few days later, they called the Procuratorate again. The staff said, "The order from above says that this lawsuit cannot be put on record."
A few days later, they called the Procuratorate again. But this time the staff's tone was very harsh, "The Political and Judiciary Committee ordered that this lawsuit cannot be put on record. The indictment will not be returned." And they hung up the phone immediately.
So far, Ms. Tang and her family members have not received any written reply regarding the refusal to put this lawsuit on record.