China to jail Nobel winner's relative

2013-08-16 14:07
(File, AFP)

(File, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Beijing - A Chinese court on Friday upheld the 11-year prison sentence handed down to the brother-in-law of jailed Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo, the man's lawyer said.

Relatives have denounced Liu Hui's conviction on fraud charges in a real estate dispute as political payback for the strong pro-democracy stance taken by Liu Xiaobo, who has been imprisoned on subversion charges since 2009.

Lawyer Shang Baojun said the court in suburban Beijing's Huairou district turned down Liu Hui's appeal at a 20-minute hearing attended by the defendant.

"We're very disappointed by this outcome," Shang told The Associated Press.

Foreign diplomats and journalists who sought to attend the trial were denied entry to the courthouse, which was cordoned off with crime scene tape and surrounded by dozens of police officers and private security guards in a sign of the case's sensitivity and high visibility.

Liu Hui's sister, Liu Xia, has been under house arrest since her husband was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2010. Shang said that Liu Xia, who has protested her extralegal detention, did not attend Friday's hearing because she wasn't feeling well.

'Psychological pressure'

The European Union's political officer in Beijing, Charles Parton, said Liu Hui's case was being closely followed because of its possible ties to Liu Xiaobo's conviction. Parton also called for the lifting of what he described as Liu Xia's "illegal house arrest".

"The EU would like to recall the great importance it attaches to the respect of human rights all over the world, the situation of human rights defenders and of their family members, as well as the due process of rule of law in China," Parton said.

Liu Hui's brother, Liu Tong, was permitted to attend the hearing. He said the outcome was "very, very disappointing".

"In our family, we were all hoping to see a good result, a result that would give our family and all of us hope," Liu said.

Liu said Liu Hui's case has caused his sister's generally poor health to deteriorate further.

"This issue brings a lot of psychological pressure and affects her greatly," he said.

Liu Xiaobo was prosecuted after he co-authored a bold call for sweeping changes to Beijing's one-party communist political system in a document titled called Charter '08. A court dismissed his appeal in early 2010.

His Nobel Peace Prize incensed China's leaders, who have retaliated against Norway, where the prize is awarded. It has frozen the country's diplomats out of meetings, halted trade talks and blocked salmon imports.

Liu Hui's lawyers have said his dispute over a development deal in Beijing had already been resolved, with the disputed $500 000 handed over to partners in the transaction, before the case went to trial.


Read more on:    eu  |  liu xiaobo  |  china  |  human rights

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
3 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.