Hejiang Court Keeps Family, Attorneys, and the Public Out of the "Open" Trial for My Parents, Mr. Wei Fengming and Ms. Luo Shuizhen
(Clearwisdom.net) In October 2008, police from Hejiang County, Luzhou City, Sichuan Province, arrested my parents, Mr. Wei Fengming and Ms. Luo Shuizhen, for publicly speaking out for Falun Gong. On May 19, 2009, after they had been detained for half a year, the Hejiang County Court held an "open" trial but refused to allow family members, attorneys, and the public to attend.
On the morning of May 19, police from across Luzhou City set up checkpoints on all major roads to Hejiang County, explicitly telling commuters that there was an open trial being held in Hejiang and they could not go there today. Some commuters were forced to turn back.
I rode with our attorneys to Hejiang. Our bus was stopped and searched by police.
Police, plainclothes officers, and security personnel wearing red emblems on their sleeves were stationed throughout Hejiang Station and Hejiang County Courthouse, including at all entrances. Traffic on some roads was detoured. The road from the station to the courthouse was barricaded. Surveillance cameras were installed upstairs and downstairs in the courthouse and also at the intersection. Officers from the Politics and Law Committees, 610 Offices, Domestic Security Sections, and community committees from Luzhou City's two counties and three districts were at the scene.
Although the "open court" announcement still hung outside the courthouse, more than one hundred people stood outside of the courthouse since tickets were required to get in. When asked how to get a ticket, the court staff replied, "No comment."
Because the court only allowed one family member per litigant to sit in the court, my uncle attended the proceedings, which meant that I was unable to.
The family of Ms. Wu Xianzhen, another litigant, could not even get to Hejiang. While on their way from the Naxi District to Hejiang County, the police intercepted their car and forced them to turn back.
Reportedly, only three or four people, including those from the 610 Office, were among the spectators at the trial.
The court would not even allow any of our six attorneys in the courtroom. Police conducted extremely lengthy and detailed security searches and checks on them until the trial ended.
During the trial, the judge interrupted my father's five-minute-long statement after he had spoken for just one or two minutes. The judge did the same to my mother. My parents were not even given a chance to state their innocence in court.