Authorities denied lawyer visitation to Chen Yunfei

Lawyer Bao Longjun and his wife lawyer Wang Yu at Chengdu People’s Procuratorate’s service center
(Photo: ChinaAid source)

(Chengdu, Sichuan province—March 7, 2022) On March 3, Christian human rights lawyer couple Mr. Bao Longjun and Mrs. Wang Yu traveled to Chengdu Pidu Detention Center to visit Chen Yunfei, but the detention center rejected the visitation under the excuse that “a verdict has been made for the case. 

 

Mr. Bao posted on Twitter with indignation: 

 

We requested to visit Chen Yunfei in the detention center, but they didn’t let us meet with him. They said a verdict has been made for his case. When did the second trial happen? Why did they never notify his lawyers? They held a secret trial! We’ll appeal in the Procuratorate! 

 

His wife Mrs. Wang Yu, also a renowned human rights lawyer, said: 

 

They held Chen Yunfei’s first trial secretly without involving his lawyers, which violated litigation procedures. Then the second trial violated article 138 of “Criminal Procedure Law of the People’s Republic of China”: 

 

“If a People’s Court of the second instance discovers that a People’s Court of the first instance has violated the litigation procedures stipulated by law, and the correct rendering of judgment may have thus been affected, it shall rescind the original judgment and remand the case to the people’s court which originally tried the case for retrial.  

 

However, they held another secret trial without hearing lawyers’ opinions and notifying the defendant’s family members. They don’t even let lawyers meet with their defendants after the verdict. What country is this? 

Lawyer Bao Longjun and Ren Quanniu at Pidu District Detention Center
(Photo: ChinaAid source)

Mr. Chen Yunfei is a renowned human rights activist who participated in the Tiananmen Square Student Movement in 1989. He has been detained and beaten in dozens of police stations and detention centers all over China. On March 25, 2015, he and more than twenty other people went to Chengdu, Xinjin county, to sweep tombs of the 1989 June 4th victims. On the way home, he was captured by more than one hundred armed police officers. He was criminally detained under the charge of “inciting subversion of state power” and “Picking quarrels and provoking trouble” the following day. On March 31, 2017, he was sentenced to four years by Wuhou District People’s Court under the charge of “Picking quarrels and provoking trouble”. He wore pajamas during his court appearance, saying they help him dream a “Chinese Dream.” When they announced the four-year sentence, he immediately said he would appeal because the sentence was too light. 

 

On March 25, 2019, Chen Yunfei was released. Soon after his release, Pi county police pressured his landlord and forced him and his mother to move. They cut off his water and power. They broke into his home, beat him, took his cell phone, and sealed his door. He posted on social media that he was expelled eight times since he moved to Pi county. On September 19, 2019, he was criminally detained for 31 days for supporting Hong Kong’s “Anti-Extradition Law Amendment Bill Movement.He investigated the enforcement of China’s “Nine-year Compulsory Education” and communicated with some students. Then he wrote two articles on his findings and was consequently arrested again on March 25, 2021. He was formally arrested on April 30 under the charge of Picking quarrels and provoking trouble.” However, Pidu District People’s Court held a secret trial and sentenced him on December 3 for the fabricated charges of forcible indecency” and child molestation.” He received a four-year sentence. 

 

He posted a statement online after the verdict:  

 

It is a fabricated charge against me. The government changed the charge from ‘Picking quarrels and provoking trouble’ into child molestation’ to damage my reputation. I interacted with some children in public areas. I read to them, discussed extra-curriculum reading materials with them, learned about their compulsory education, recommended good books to them, shared the gospel with them, and invited them to some book reading events. I had absolutely no evil thoughts. After I was last released, I already knew would be back to prison very soon. I can face the fabricated charge calmly. I will stick with my heart. I often feel guilty for my old mother, wife, and daughter because I didn’t spend enough time with them. But I’m pleased that my mother accepted Jesus as her Savior when I was in prison. 

Christian Zhang Guoqing visits Chen Yunfei’s 86-year-old mother
(Photo: ChinaAid source)

On January 1, 2022, Chengdu Early Rain Covenant Church’s Zhang Guoqing traveled to Dazhou to visit Chen Yunfei’s 86-year-old mother. He told her about Chen’s case, and she cried. She was worried about her son.  

 

In 2020, Chen Yunfei was baptized in Chengdu Early Rain Covenant Church and shared how he experienced God in the prison. He said: 

 

Why do the judges, prosecutors, police officers, prison guards, and oppressors hate me so much and persecute us? Because they lack love. Love is so scarce for them. How could it be possible for them to love? Only when their hearts are full of love can they give us love. Thus, the only thing we need to do is to continuously pray for God to save them from Satan and to pour out His love on them! 

 




~Yu Bing, ChinaAid special reporter 




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