China: detained human rights lawyer has court hearing postponed despite poor health, allegations of tortureEvent
- Initial Date
- Oct 27, 2020
- Event Description
On October 27, Lin Qilei, attorney for Li Yuhan, a female human rights lawyer in her 60’s, announced that the supreme people’s court has rescheduled Li’s case for November 30. Li, who has been detained for more than three years at Shengyang No. 1 Detention Center, suffers multiple health concerns, including hypothyroidism, ischemic heart disease, and stomach problems, requiring daily medications. After a fall in 2018 which led to spinal damages, Li now has to walk with a crutch.
Authorities initially indicted Li for provoking troubles and picking quarrels, but later, added fraud to her charges. As evidence regarding her case has not proved to be sufficient, however, the court has repeatedly delayed hearing her case, blocking her release. After authorities transferred Li’s case to Shengyang Municipal Heping People’s Court on April 8, 2018, the court decided to host the trial on June 8, 2019, now scheduled for November 30. With no verdict after more than three years, supporters suspect officials have targeted and repressed her “simple" case.
During Li’s detention, police have hired the female cell head and other prisoners to torture daily her. Tactics include:
Forcing her to take cold showers. Rationing her food to half of portions other prisoners receive. Placing her vegetable/s and fruit on the restroom floor to prevent her from eating it. Giving her the previous day’s vegetable/s and fruit after other prisoners intentionally urinated on them; Prohibiting her family members from depositing money into her prison account.
After his last meeting with Li, Attorney Lin also announced that court officials have not addressed his nor Li’s application for bail and compulsory change. Li believes that authorities fabricated charges against her to persecute and suppress her previous work safeguarding other people’s rights.
The judicial department asked Li to write the “confession and acceptance of penalty” letter in exchange for her release, but she refused to compromise her stance. Attorney Lin relayed greetings and concerns from others to Li Yuhan, hoping that she can remain upbeat and able to confront conceivable challenges.
- Impact of Event
- Gender of HRD
- (Arbitrary) Arrest and Detention
- Denial Fair Trial
- Judicial Harassment
- Rights Concerned
- Right to fair trial
- Right to healthy and safe environment
- Right to liberty and security
- Event Location
- Summary for Publications
On 27 October 2020, Li Yuhan, female human rights lawyer in prison for over 3 years, had the Supreme Court hearing postponed despite deteriorating health conditions and allegations of torture in Shengyang, China