42-Year-Old Engineer Pushed into Courtroom in a Wheelchair
(Minghui.org) After Mr. Huang Liqiao, an engineer from Tianjin City Seamless Steel Pipe Company, was arrested, he went on a hunger strike for more than 70 days. On July 24, he was illegally tried by the Tianjin City Hebei District Court. Emaciated because of the hunger strike, he had to be pushed into the courtroom in a wheelchair. His family is very worried about him.
Mr. Huang, 42, began to work for Tianjin City Seamless Steel Pipe Company in 1988 as a technical engineer. Previously he had worked for the Energy Department in quality control. He had a lot of power in his position, but he always remained an honest employee, never accepting bribes or taking anything that did not belong to him. He was always an excellent employee. When the pipe company was established, they wanted to keep their good employees and signed a contract with him to employ him indefinitely.
Because Mr. Huang practiced Falun Gong, in 2008 he was sentenced to a forced labor camp, and his employers canceled his contract. Mr. Huang objected and brought a lawsuit against the company to have his employment contract reinstated. His case was handled by the No. 2 Intermediate Court. However, the Tianjin City 610 Office intervened and suspended his suit until six months before the deadline to issue a verdict. The Court then advised him that they needed a three-month extension, because they had to leave it up to the Tianjin City 610 Office to decide what to do.
During this time, Mr. Huang did not have a job, so he delivered water for a living. On March 30, 2012, the Tianjin City 610 Office instigated police officers in that area to threaten his manager at the water station, telling him that they'd arrest Mr. Huang. This prompted Mr. Huang, on April 5 and 6, to ask the Tianjin City 610 Office and the Court when a verdict would be handed down. He was told that people from the 610 Office would come find him. After that, police officers from the Hebei District monitored his home and followed him.
On the afternoon of April 7, he was arrested. On April 12, prompted by the 610 Office, the Court ruled in favor of the pipe company. Mr. Huang's lawyer was coerced into signing the verdict.
After Mr. Huang was arrested, he was held in the Hebei District Detention Center in Tianjin City. The Tianjin 610 Office and judicial departments in the Hebei District have plotted to have him sentenced. On May 14, Mr. Huang went on a hunger strike to protest the persecution. He was force-fed by police officers and taken to Zhuoyuanciji Hospital inside the Tianjin City Detention Center.
Mr. Huang's family hired a lawyer from Beijing to defend him at his trial on July 24 in the Hebei District Court in Tianjin City. Due to the fact that he had been on a hunger strike for more than 70 days, he was so debilitated that he had to be brought into the courtroom in a wheelchair. When his family saw how emaciated and pale he was, they were extremely worried about him.
We appeal to people from all walks of life to do what they can to save this man's life.