Lawyer Yang Zaixin Dismissed for Defending Falun Gong Practitioner

Lawyer Yang Zaixin was dismissed on January 26th, 2006, from the Zhongchi Law Firm in Guangxi Province for defending Falun Gong practitioner Nong Youyue of Pinggou County, Guangxi Province.

On January 26th, Mr. Yang received notice from the Zhongchi Law Firm, stating that he was no longer a licensed lawyer with the firm, as he had not renewed his contract. Therefore, beginning February 1st, 2006, he could no longer use the title of Zhongchi Law Firm lawyer.

Mr. Yang believes that Zhongchi Law Firm's decision was made under enormous pressure from the authorities. Mr. Yang had been a lawyer with the firm since 1996 and was made a partner in 2002. During his nine years with Zhongchi, Mr. Yang had never signed a formal contract with the firm. However, he never expressed his intention to leave, and he was handling many cases on behalf of the firm. Also, the firm had never notified Mr. Yang orally or in writing that he needed to renew his contract.

As early as January 12th, 2006, when Mr. Yang was in Jinan City, Shandong Province, representing another Falun Gong practitioner, lawyer Liu Ruping, to appeal his labour camp sentence, he received a phone call from the former head of his law firm, Chen Yongcai. Chen told him that because of his involvement in the case of Falun Gong practitioner Nong Youyue, the firm intended to end their business relationship with him. Chen also asked Mr. Yang to give a written explanation of the case. Lawyer Yang sent the Guangxi Provincial Legal Office the indictment, the defence presentation, the court's decision, the process of dealing with Nong Youyue's case, and lawyer Gao Zhisheng's three open letters to the National Congress, Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao.

On the morning of December 8th, 2005, under orders of the Baise City 610 Office1, Falun Gong practitioners Nong Youyue, Huang Ying and Lan Hongping from Pingguo County were illegally tried in court. Nong Youyue's family requested that Mr. Yang ask for a not guilty verdict on behalf of Nong Youyue. When the judge read Mr. Yang's defence statement and learned that Mr. Yang was going to defend Nong Youyue and ask for a not-guilty verdict, the judge instantly banned him from defending the case in court. When Yang asked the judge on what basis he was not allowed to defend the accused, the judge said, "There is no point in discussing this decision. You would be wise to give up any effort on behalf of the accused. We will not permit your defence anyway." Whenever Mr. Yang attempted to speak, the judge and the seven or eight prosecutors interrupted him in unison. After Mr. Yang left the court, he was followed by many uniformed and plainclothes police from noon until night. When asked, they explained that they were "protecting" him. Actually, they were trying to restrict his actions. On December 31st, Nong Youyue, Lan Hongping and Huangying were illegally judged by the Party's court in Pingguo County.

In April 2003, lawyer Wei Jun of the Baicheng Law Firm was also persecuted for defending Dafa practitioner Ms. Liang Changying, a teacher at the Party school in the Youjiang District of Baise City, Guangxi Province.

When defending Ms. Liang in the No. 2 Criminal Court of the Youjiang District Court,W ei presented a very powerful defence speech, including examples of existing laws, the merits of the case's justice, facts, and rational reasoning. In the end, the so-call "prosecutors" could find nothing to justify their accusations and were extremely frustrated. After the court was adjourned, they immediately complained to the authorities, asking, "Aren't there regulations to forbid lawyers from defending Falun Gong practitioners on a not guilty basis? Why was this one allowed to do so?"

As a result, beginning at noon that day, Wei's home, work, and mobile telephones were monitored. From that day onward, the police put pressure on the staff from the Judicial Bureau responsible for Wei, demanding that they revoke Wei's license and hand down a three-year labour camp sentence. The leaders of the bureau strongly opposed these demands. In the end, Wei had to compromise. He had to promise not to defend Falun Gong practitioners and to take back all materials concerning the Falun Gong case. Later the court convicted Ms. Liang Changying behind closed doors, despite the fact that she had not broken the law.

Note

1. "The 610 office" is an agency specifically created to persecute Falun Gong, with absolute power over each level of administration in the Party and all other political and judiciary systems.


Chinese version available at http://minghui.ca/mh/articles/2006/2/8/120356.html

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