May 26, 2010
SHANGHAI — Pro-life and human rights activist Mao Hengfeng, imprisoned since February 24, was finally allowed to meet with one of her lawyers on May 24. Mao’s lawyers and friends remain deeply concerned by the conduct of the government officials involved, who have disregarded judicial procedures and laws in their attempt to silence Mao Hengfeng. Mao was sentenced to 18 months Re-education through Labor on March 4, and was recently transferred to Brigade 4 of the Hefei Women’s Re-Education through Labor Center of Anhui Province to serve the remainder of her term.
Mao’s husband Wu Xuewei and Attorney Liu Peifu from Beijing Gongxin Law Firm went to visit her at the Hefei Labor Camp on May 24. The camp authorities refused to allow Mao to meet with more than one visitor, permitting only Attorney Liu to see her. Mao told him that she refused to wear the prison uniforms mandated by the authorities, and that she has been fasting and praying.
Following is the translation of a report written by Mu Zi, information assistant of Chinese Human Rights Defenders (CHRD). It was initially released yesterday, May 25, on www.canyu.org.
Shanghai human rights defender Mao Hengfeng has been transferred to a re-education through labor center in Anhui.
CHRD has just learned that the Shanghai human rights activist and Christian Mao Hengfeng was transferred to serve her term at Brigade 4 of Hefei Women’s Re-education through Labor Center of Anhui Province. From February 24, when Mao Hengfeng was arrested, to March 4, when she was sentenced to 18 months of re-education through labor, her attorney and family members were unable to meet with her.
While Mao Hengfeng was detained, her husband Mr. Wu went to the Bureau of Justice, the Bureau of Re-education through Labor, the Municipal Public Security Bureau, the District Public Security Bureau, Yangpu District People’s Congress, and the District Government and requested a meeting, but the requests were always rejected. When Mr. Wu appealed at the Municipal Public Security Bureau and District Public Security Bureau, people from Daqiao Police Station in charge of the area’s jurisdiction would come in a police vehicle and take away Mr. Wu by force. Meanwhile, Mao Hengfeng’s attorney has made two trips to Shanghai from Beijing and wanted to meet with Mao Hengfeng in accordance with the legal procedure, but each time the attorney’s request was rejected.
Mr. Wu Xuewei said, “I received a letter from Mao Hengfeng from the Women’s Re-education through Labor Center in Anhui on May 17. The letter was written by her on May 9 and was mailed out from a post office in Anhui on May 15. In the letter, she didn’t mention her health in the past three months and only said she wants me to be her agent in the lawsuit. She doesn’t know at all that we in the family have already hired an attorney for her. In the past few months, Shanghai authorities have made every effort to block any information of her from the detention center and there is also no way for her to get any information from the outside world.”
On the same afternoon Mr. Wu received the letter from Mao Hengfeng, he also received a call from Shanghai Municipal Re-education through Labor Center. A chief from the Management Section of Shanghai Municipal Re-education through Labor Center told him that Mao Hengfeng was sent to Shanghai Municipal Women’s Re-education through Labor Center on April 26, and on the next day (April 27) she was transferred to Hefei Women’s Re-education through Labor Center in Anhui. When Mr. Wu asked by what regulations they transferred Shanghai natives to Anhui to serve the term, the chief in the Management Section said: “I can’t answer that question.”
According to the normal procedure, the detention center should have issued a “notice of transfer of detention” to the family members after Mao Hengfeng was transferred out of the original detention center. And when a person arrives at the re-education through labor center, the center is supposed to send the family members a “notice of student in the re-education through labor program and bank account.” However, Mr. Wu has never received such written or oral notices.
As for Mao Hengfeng’s transfer to serve the term in Anhui, Mr. Wu’s worries for his wife cannot be described. Based on Mao Hengfeng’s past experiences with detention, Mr. Wu believes the reason why the authorities don’t allow the family members to meet with her for such a long time is because it is very likely that Mao Hengfeng has been tortured again in the prison. That’s why the authorities blocks the information in this way and even don’t allow the attorney to meet with her. While the family worries about Mao Hengfeng, there is no way they can file the lawsuit for her.
Filled with grief and indignation, Mr. Wu said, “Since ancient time, the Chinese rulers would grant amnesty whenever there was a big event or a happy occasion. Nowadays, on the contrary, the government arrests innocent people on a large scale and sentences them to long terms of imprisonment because of the Expo. The reason why some people dare to defy the law of the state in the thuggish government is because no one will investigate their wrongdoings. What China lacks now is the administration according to law. If this phenomenon persists for too long, how can we the common people survive?”
The great majority of family members can’t meet with the human rights activists in Shanghai detained and sentenced to re-education through labor during the Expo. They don’t know about the detainees’ health or their condition. Chen Xiaoming, the now deceased Shanghai human rights activist, died two days after he was released on medical parole from Baimaoling Prison. He was transferred there from a Shanghai prison. This makes Mr. Wu worry about the personal safety of Mao Hengfeng and her very survival. Given that Mao Hengfeng suffered torture on many occasions in the past, Mr. Wu calls on people from various circles of life to show concern on Mao Hengfeng’s current situation and her personal safety.
Attorney Liu’s phone number: 8615810689695
Attorney Li Baiguang’s phone number: 13521235268
Wu Xuewei’s phone numbers: cell 13901662286, home phone 021-65195100
ChinaAid is outraged at these continued acts of oppression and flagrant lawlessness of these Chinese officials. We exhort the government to enforce a higher adherence of the law, proper legal procedures, and just treatment of its citizens. ChinaAid encourages Christians worldwide to speak on behalf of Mao Hengfeng, to pray for her physical health and spiritual encouragement, and to stand with her husband and lawyers as they fight for her freedom.
Read previous press release on Mao Hengfeng
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