New South Wales Supreme Court Hearing for Zhang Cuiying's Lawsuit against Jiang (Photos)
(Clearwisdom.net) On the morning of March 7, 2006, Australian-Chinese artist and Falun Gong practitioner Ms. Zhang Cuiying held a press conference in front of the Supreme Court of New South Wales (NSW) to inform the media about the latest development in her lawsuit against the chief culprits for persecuting Falun Gong, former Chinese Communist Party Secretary General Jiang Zemin and the 610 Office. Freelance journalist Richard Szabo made a speech at the press conference, revealing to the media some documents he obtained from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) under freedom of information legislation. The documents expose that DFAT, being manipulated by the CCP, breached its duty, did not adhere to its principles, and intentionally obstructed the case. All this information verified the inside stories revealed by former Chinese Embassy officer Chen Yonglin--that DFAT caved in to CCP pressure and provided legal assistance privately to the Chinese side in relation to the lawsuit.
The mainstream media in Australia paid closely attention to the development of the case. Reporters from Sydney Morning Herald, AAP and ABC arrived quite early in the morning at the court, listening to the process of the case at court. After the hearing, Zhang Cuiying and other Falun Gong practitioners held a press conference outside the court, answering questions from reporters and accepting interviews from 2SM Broadcasting Station, SBS Broadcasting Station, 2SER Broadcasting Station, AAP, NTDTV, the Epoch Times and some other Chinese and English media.
Zhang Cuiying filed her case at the New South Wales Supreme Court on September 15, 2004. She was tortured for 8 months in a Chinese labor camp for practicing Falun Gong. Ms. Zhang was subjected to brutal torture during her detention, and was rescued in 2000 due to efforts by the Australian Government.
The New South Wales Supreme Court accepted Ms. Zhang's lawsuit, issued subpoenas three times in succession to the two defendants and held two hearings. The two defendants did not appear at court during the hearing in response to the requirement of the court. The defendant, Jiang Zemin, refused to accept the subpoena twice, and did not respond once. The "610 Office" signed for the subpoenas, but did not appear in court.
In August 2005, the New South Wales Supreme Court required the Department of Foreign Affairs to deliver the lawsuit to China's Supreme Court, but the DFAT did not cooperate, and the lawsuit still remains in the hand of DFAT. It has been reported that the main reason for this is that DFAT received threats and enticement from the CCP.
As verified by former first political secretary at the Chinese Consulate in Sydney, Chen Yonglin, after the court accepted the case, CCP officials pressured DFAT into exerting pressure on the plaintiff, and asked DFAT to help stop the case. In response to the request from the Chinese side, DAFT expressed reluctance to interfere in civil legal matters. But from documents obtained by Richard Szabo from the DFAT, it can be seen that in a cable transcript (CE2027H) to Beijing dated September 28, 2004, DFAT officials stated that the Government would do everything it could, within the law, to ensure that the case did not become a problem for the bilateral relationship. Chen Yonglin said, "After a heated discussion with the Chinese Embassy in Australia, DFAT offered legal consultation on how to halt the case."
Regarding this response from DAFT, Zhang Cuiying said, "DFAT is trying to have the case drag on to the point it is no longer worth being tried." Zhang Cuiying delivered the documents from the DAFT to the Supreme Court. After seeing the documents revealed about DFAT, the Supreme Court immediately agreed to hold a hearing on March 7. At the hearing, the plaintiff Zhang Cuiying's representative requested the court to compel DFAT to serve the documents to the defendants in China without further delay, and allow an extra six months for the document to be served.
The Department of Law and (or) DFAT should deliver the subpoenas to China through diplomatic channels within one month of the court order. After the hearing today, the Supreme Court will hold another hearing in relation to the lawsuit against Jiang on the morning of March 30, further hearing the client's statement and documents provided.
Prior to and after the hearing and press conference, dozens of Falun Gong practitioners came to offer support. They unfurled banners and built a "Great Wall of Truth." The torture methods exposed from the banners and the information about the CCP's brutal persecution of Falun Gong practitioners were shocking to the passersby and staffers working near the Supreme Court. They stopped to watch and accept truth-clarification materials.