Upstanding Citizens Put on Trial for Submitting Articles to Overseas Media
(Minghui.org) “A group of top talents in Chinese society is being abused by law enforcement personnel who knowingly ignore legal procedures.” This is how an attorney summarized the courtroom situation during the trial of four upstanding citizens, all of them accomplished professionals in their respective fields, on December 20, 2013.
The trial of the four Falun Gong practitioners, under the charge of “submitting a large number of articles to overseas media with organized efforts,” took place at the Jianghan District Court in Wuhan City, Hubei Province. No verdict was announced at the trial.
The defense attorneys received the trial date notification only three days prior. All four defendants were taken to the courtroom from detention centers through an underground passage in the courthouse.
Many police officers were stationed outside the courthouse on the morning of December 20. They took videos of the passersby. Furthermore, many government personnel from different agencies patrolled the square outside the courthouse.
Many local Falun Gong practitioners were monitored or followed that morning. Some were even harassed at home.
Attorneys Demand Immediate Release
Family members hired defense attorneys for the four practitioners: Mr. Shen Xuewu, Mr. Zhao Hu, Mr. Chen Gang, and Ms. Cui Hai. The attorneys argued on their behalf that all charges were groundless.
The attorneys strongly demanded the immediate release of their clients: “Sending articles to overseas media is a citizen's basic right granted by the Constitution ... It is illegal to detain an innocent citizen in a brainwashing center, and for a prolonged period of time. Furthermore, it is legal to practice Falun Gong in China.”
Practitioners Speak Up for Their Own Rights
Mr. Chen Gang stated, “I believe in Falun Gong. I deny all of the allegations. The charges are false.” He had been held at the Hubei Province Brainwashing Center and tortured for over two months prior to the trial.
Ms. Cui said in her closing statement, “The persecution against practitioners has no legitimate legal basis. You are committing crimes by persecuting us!”
Mr. Zhao stated the facts of the persecution. He informed all attendees that the persecution affected not only practitioners, but also the entire Chinese society.
Family Members Defend Their Loved Ones
Mr. Shen's wife arrived at the courthouse early to attend the trial. For over a year, her husband had been detained at a brainwashing center. She had to take care of their child alone and endure a great deal of financial and mental pressure.
Yet she firmly stood by her husband. When Mr. Shen faced illegal accusations and unreasonable questioning during the trial, she called out from the bottom of her heart, “Decline to answer!” She was then forcefully removed from the courtroom.
No verdict was announced at the end of the trial. The 9 a.m. session ended at 12:30.
Professional Background of the Practitioners
Mr. Shen Xuewu, in his 40s, is a former instructor at the Wuchang Military Finance Institute. He was arrested in November 2012.
Mr. Zhao Hu, 40, formerly taught at the Tongji Medical College of the Huazhong University of Science and Technology in Wuhan City. He was arrested at his home in Guangzhou, where he taught at a university for two years, on October 26, 2012.
After his arrest, he was transferred to Wuhan. He was one of the main editors of Business Administration , a textbook for college students.
Mr. Chen Gang, 40, an instructor at the Wuhan Technological University, was arrested at work by the Wuhan Police Department on September 4, 2012.
Ms. Cui Hai, 64, is a former general manager of the Guangzhou office of the Wuhan Chemicals Import and Export Company and a graduate of the Hubei Province Traditional Opera School.
Ms. Cui was harassed at home by police on September 6 and 7, 2012, so she went into hiding. However, she was caught and arrested in October.
Earlier reports: Seven Professionals Arrested in Wuhan, Four Still Detained Several University Professors in Wuhan, Hubei Province, Recently Arrested Highly Regarded College Teacher Mr. Shen Xuewu Taken into Custody for the Fourth Time