Shouguang City Court Attempts to Prevent Attorneys from Defending Falun Gong Practitioners
(Clearwisdom.net) Shandong Province Weifang City Intermediate Court and Shouguang City Court have again made false charges against Falun Gong practitioners. Nine practitioners from Shouguang City have already been illegally detained for a year, and their appeals were dismissed by Weifang City Intermediate Court, who sustained the original ruling by Shouguang City Court. Mr. Zhang Zhaoyu was sentenced to 14 years, Mr. You Huifu 12 years, Ms. Zhao Suyan 11 years, Ms. Zhao Suhong 10 years, Ms. Han Lianfeng 10 years, Ms. Yang Ruiying 8 years, Mr. Ding Hong 6 years, Mr. You Yunsheng 6 years, and Ms. Li Suzhen to 4 years. These nine practitioners are now held in either the Jinan Women's Jail or in the Shandong Province Jail.
The entire process, from arrest to detainment and trial, was completely manipulated by the police stations, the Procuratorate, and the courts. These three entities worked in collusion. The court didn't even notify the practitioners' families of the trial date. The families knew nothing about these events the entire time.
On April 21, 2009, the families of Falun Gong practitioners Ms. You Huifu, Ms. Zhao Suyan, and Ms. Zhao Suhong hired human rights lawyers Mr. Li Chunfu, Ms. Xie Yanyi, and Mr. Jin Guanghong to defend them. The three lawyers planned to file a plea of not guilty for the three practitioners.
On the afternoon of April 21, the three lawyers went to Shouguang City Court. According to the procedures of the Chinese legal system, the attorneys would go through the files of the original ruling and take care of the procedures for making the plea. However, the court personnel said that the judge for this case was not there, and refused to let the lawyers look at the files. The next day, the three lawyers went to the court again. This time the court was prepared, and there were many police officers by the entrance. The lawyers were told that they must go through a security check. They were basically trying to prevent the lawyers from meeting the judge. The lawyers took out a document from the Ministry of Justice and explained that according to the rules, lawyers are not required to go through security checks when they are working on cases. The staff worker said, "This is according to our court's rule, and you must follow it." The lawyers requested to talk with the higher officials of the court. The staff said none were there. The three lawyers tried to negotiate for several hours, just to be able to view the files and go through the plea procedures. In the end, they were still denied entry into the court.
On April 23, the lawyers again went to the Shouguang City Court. They were denied entry with the same methods. Having no other option, they then went to the Weifang Intermediate Court, and the Intermediate Court just said the judge was absent to prevent the lawyers from carrying out the legal procedures.
On the afternoon of April 23, the three lawyers decided to go to the jails to meet their clients. Attorney Li Chunfu went to Jinan City Jail and requested to meet Ms. Zhao Suyan and Ms. Zhao Suhong. After he asked and asked, the policewoman in the reception room was close to letting him meet the two practitioners, but was too afraid to make a decision by herself. She said that she would have to talk to the higher-level officials to make the decision. When Mr. Li again came to Jinan City Jail, a police officer said that she could not let them meet, because there was an order that no matter who wants to see a detained Falun Gong practitioner, the request must be approved by a higher branch.
The other two lawyers, Ms. Xie Yanyi and Mr. Jin Guanghong, went to Shandong Province Jail. They asked to see their client Mr. You Huifu. The jail police refused with the same reason and also said that the lawyers did not go through the complete procedures.
The three lawyers sent several complaint letters, about the court obstructing them from meeting the judge, to the Shandong Province Committee for Discipline Inspection, Provincial Supreme People's Procuratorate, and Provincial Justice Department, etc., but have not heard back from any of them.
Main Judge in Shouguang City Court: Dong Fengli (86-536-5197532)
Related officials: Zhang Lihua (86-536-5228406), Zhang Tongwen (86-536-5197566 )