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Rights Defense Lawyer Detained After Court Appearance

April 4, 2013

On April 4, 2013, a judge at the Jingjiang City People’s Court, Jiangsu Province, put a Beijing rights defense lawyer, Wang Quanzhang (王全璋), under a 10-day judicial detention for “serious violations of court procedure.”  Wang is currently being held at the Jingjiang Detention Center.

Supporters in front of Jingjiang City People’s Court, April 5, 2013. Source: Wu Lei’s microblog

Sources told Human Rights in China (HRIC) that on April 3, the court—where Wang was representing a Falun Gong practitioner, Zhu Yanian (朱亚年), in a hearing—confiscated Wang’s mobile phone when he attempted to use it to photocopy a set of original documents that he was submitting to the court. The presiding judge, Wang Pin, ordered court security officers to take Wang into custody at the end of the hearing. The detention order was posted on the court’s website 24 hours later, on April 4.

Wang’s detention has prompted widespread attention and concern, particularly among lawyers. Many of them, along with netizens, are calling for Wang’s immediate release, requesting the court to make public the videotape of the April 3 court proceeding. Several lawyers have arrived in Jinjiang to assist in Wang’s case.

Wang is known for his willingness to take on sensitive cases and represent vulnerable groups. He was involved in the defense of Shandong reporter Qi Chonghuai (齐崇淮), who is currently serving a 12-year prison sentence. In 2012, he was physically dragged out of a court in Northeastern China when he defended another Falun Gong practitioner. In February this year, he took on the representation of Shenzhen police officer Wang Dengchao (王登朝), who is appealing a 14-year prison term on conviction of "embezzlement" and "obstruction of official duty.”

For more information on Wang Quanzhang, see: