Wang Xiaodong, the Man Vouched for by 300 Neighbors, Now in Prison in Tangshan City
(Minghui.org) Mr. Wang Xiaodong, whom 300 of his fellow villagers vouched for by putting their fingerprints on a petition calling for his release, was secretly tried a second time. On the evening of October 16, he was transferred to Jidong Prison in Tangshan City. He was not allowed to hire a lawyer and his family was not informed.
According to an insider, Mr. Wang kept asking for a meeting with his family before being transferred to Tangshan Prison. However, his request was never granted. It is said that the court's decision was brought about by a person who used to be jailed in the same cell as Mr. Wang. However, Mr. Wang's family members still have not received the verdict.
Before the trials, Mr. Wang kept asking for a lawyer to defend him. His family did hire a lawyer from Beijing, but the judge refused to allow the lawyer to be present, giving specious reasons, such as asking the lawyer to sign a paper to prove that he (or she) was not a Falun Gong practitioner. The judge of Cangzhou City Intermediate Court, Zhang Zhanhong, yelled at Mr. Wang when he refused to sign the verdict: “You will be punished whether you sign or not!” When Mr. Wang asked for a lawyer, she said, “It's impossible for you to plead 'not guilty'!”
Mr. Wang, 42, is a teacher in Zhouguantun Village, Botou City, Hebei Province. On the morning of February 25, 2012, police officers ransacked his home and arrested him. His elderly parent and young child were left on their own. The 300 families in the village were very angry about this and signed a petition demanding his release. The village chief even stamped the petition with an official village seal. This activity was reported by the media around the world. The petition with 300 signatures was later taken to the Political Bureau and circulated as internal information, causing serious concern within the bureau.
Officials from the Botou government, 610 Office, and the police department were angered by what Mr. Wang's family and the villagers had done. Villagers were then forced to declare their stance on the Falun Gong issue and were made to curse Falun Gong. Banners defaming the practice were posted around the village. Mr. Wang's younger sister, Ms. Wang Xiaomei, was sentenced to forced labor, and Mr. Wang's elder brother, Mr. Wang Junjie, had to leave home to avoid being arrested.
A trial was held in Botou Court on July 18. The court turned down Mr. Wang's request to hire two lawyers from Beijing, and appointed two other lawyers to argue his case. On August 14, one of Mr. Wang's relatives received a phone call from the deputy chief of Botou City Detention Center, and was told that Mr. Wang had been sentenced to three years in a prison. He also said that Mr. Wang would like to meet with the lawyers from Beijing to appeal, so Mr. Wang's mother and sister visited Botou Court and Botou City Detention Center to request a copy of the formal verdict. However, no one was willing to give them the verdict until August 20.
Mr. Wang appealed to Cangzhou Intermediate People's Court at the beginning of September. However, the vice president of the Second Chamber and the judge, Zhang Zhanhong, refused to allow the lawyers to read the pertinent document, saying they first had to sign a document stating they were not Falun Gong practitioners. According to an insider, Mr. Wang was secretly sentenced on October 4 and transferred to Jidong Prison in Tangshan City on October 16. It's perfectly legal to purchase Shen Yun DVDs portraying authentic Chinese culture. Mr. Wang has been illegally sentenced.
Mr. Wang Xiaodong in the Eyes of the People of His Village
Mr. Wang Xiaodong's Family Will File Lawsuit Against Officials from Botou City
Mr. Wang Xiaodong from Botou City, Hebei Province, Put on Trial