Lawyers Seeking Compensation from the State after Being Roughed Up by Bailiffs
(Minghui.org) Two defense lawyers roughed up by court bailiffs are requesting state compensation for their lost income, travel expenses, and confiscated personal items. They are also demanding a written apology from the two judges involved and compensation for their emotional sufferings.
Roughed Up by Bailiffs
Attorneys Mr. Lu Yange and Mr. Li Xiongbing, along with Ms. Xiong Dongmei, represented three Huili County residents tried for refusing to renounce Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline being persecuted by the Chinese communist regime.
Before the first hearing was to start on November 17, 2017, judges Qiu Yun and Yang Jilan of Huili County Court ordered the three lawyers to surrender their briefcases and laptops. When they refused to comply with the demand, judge Qiu adjourned the hearing.
Several bailiffs overheard the lawyers discussing plans to file a complaint against Qiu and Yang for their illegal demand. The bailiffs shoved the lawyers. When Mr. Lu began to record what was going on, the bailiffs struck him. They proceeded to search the lawyers and their briefcases, laptops, cell phones, and other personal items.
Mr. Lu's injuries required a stay at the ICU in the local hospital.
Taking Issue with Lies on Social Media
The local police department issued a notice for the court to post on the latter's social media page on November 19. The notice alleged that there was no evidence to show that bailiffs had ever beaten Mr. Lu.
Mr. Lu and Mr. Li immediately responded on social media and countered the fallacious claims made by the police and the court.
Falun Gong Practitioners Sentenced Without Legal Representation
Judge Qiu resumed the hearing of the three Falun Gong practitioners on November 30. Because Mr. Lu was still recovering from his injuries and the other two lawyers were unable to be present, the practitioners had to face the judge without any legal representation.
Qiu sentenced all three practitioners to prison on December 28, giving Ms. Cui Deli 3 years and Ms. Hua Wanxia and Ms. Zhang Huiqiong 3 years and 3 months each.
The practitioners filed appeals with the Liangzhou County Intermediate Court, which ruled on April 19, 2018, to overturn the guilty verdicts. The practitioners are now awaiting retrial.
Lawyers File Complaint Against Judges
Mr. Lu and Mr. Li filed a complaint against judges Qiu and Yang for violating their right to represent their clients and for allowing their bailiffs to abuse the lawyers.
The Huili County Court accepted the case on March 9, 2018. Judge Gan Xiaolan held a hearing on April 27.
Judges Qiu Yun and Yang Jilan submitted written evidence in their favor but didn't show up for the hearing.
Mr. Lu wasn't able to attend, as he was out of town handling another case. Mr. Li made the case for state compensation during the hearing.
Entitled to State Compensation
According to China's state compensation law, a victim is entitled to compensation if a department in charge of investigatory, procuratorial, judicial, or prison administration work, or its functionaries, infringes upon the victim's right of the person and/or property rights in executing their functions and powers.
Mr. Li argued that no law requires defense lawyers to turn in their briefcases and laptops and that the Huili County Court should have protected the lawyers' right to represent their clients. He argued that he, Mr. Lu, and Ms. Xiong were targeted because they were representing Falun Gong practitioners, who have been unfairly targeted since the persecution began in July 1999.
Mr. Li pointed out that judges Qiu and Yang violated their right of the person and property right by allowing the bailiffs to search them and confiscate their personal items.
Because the illegal body search happened while the lawyers were exercising their legal right to represent their clients, the lawyers also suffered mental injury. As such, the judges should issue a written apology and compensate the lawyers for their emotional sufferings, per the state compensation law.
Mr. Li urged the court to stay impartial in its handling of the complaint against its own judges.
Per the compensation procedure, a department liable for compensation “shall pay compensation within two months from the date the application is received; if the claimant to compensation is not satisfied with the sum of compensation, he may file a motion with the next higher level department to reconsider the compensation.”
Judge Gan announced that she would submit the case to the court's state compensation committee for consideration. Mr. Li said he and Mr. Lu reserve the right to appeal to the higher agency if the compensation turns out to be unsatisfactory.