torsdag 29. juli 2021

Court in China's Hebei Jails Agricultural Magnate Sun Dawu For 18 Years

A court in the northern province of Hebei on Wednesday handed down an 18-year jail term to an agricultural billionaire who aided China's embattled human rights lawyers. Sun Dawu, 57, was handed the sentence by the Gaobeidian Municipal People's Court, which found him guilty of a slew of charges including "picking quarrels and stirring up trouble," a charge often used to target critics of the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

Sun was also found guilty in a trial behind closed doors alongside 20 relatives and colleagues of "gathering a crowd to attack government departments" and "obstructing officials in the course of their administration." He was also ordered to pay fines of 3.11 million yuan (U.S.$475,000) by the court.

Sun's eldest son Sun Meng, was sentenced to 12 years' imprisonment, while his brothers Sun Dehua and Sun Zhihua were handed jail terms of 12 and nine years respectively. Sun told the court in his closing statement at the trial, which was held behind closed doors amid unprecedented surveillance and security, that he was a loyal CCP supporter who ran his business according to socialist ideals of shared prosperity. In a reference to late Song Dynasty general Yue Fei, a legendary folk hero generally said to have died on the orders of chancellor Qin Hui on a trumped-up charge, Sun said: "There are no guarantees that loyal service to one's country will result in a happy ending."