Liu Ping (刘萍)Comments Off on Liu Ping (刘萍)
Liu Ping 刘萍
Crime: Creating a disturbance, using a cult to undermine implementation of law, and gathering a crowd to disrupt order of a public place
Length of Punishment: Six years and six months
Court: Yushui District People’s Court (Jiangxi)
Trial Date: December 3, 2013
Sentencing Date: June 19, 2014
Dates of Detention/Arrest: April 27, 2013 (detained); June 4, 2013 (arrested)
Place of Incarceration: Nanchang City Women’s Prison (Jiangxi Province)
Defence Statement: First-Instance Trial (Chinese)
Verdict: Yushui District People’s Court Criminal Verdict (Chinese)
Appeal Hearing Date: August 5, 2014
Appeal Hearing Ruling: Upheld original sentence
Appeal Ruling: Xinyu City Intermediate People’s Court Criminal Ruling (Chinese)
Liu Ping, a prominent Jiangxi-based activist, was detained in April 2013 as part of a nationwide crackdown on freedom of assembly, association, and expression that began in March of that year. Liu was initially arrested for “inciting subversion of state power,” but local authorities later charged her with three other crimes. During her prolonged pre-trial detention, Liu was reportedly physically assaulted and subjected to other forms of mistreatment. Police beat her in the days after they took her into custody, and she reported being choked and, having her arms twisted painfully. Later, when Liu was interrogated in the detention center, police repeatedly shoved her head against metal bars, twisted her neck and arms, and also shackled her extensively. It was reported in July 2013 she had become very weak, having lost a great deal of weight while needing to force herself to eat and suffering daily bouts of diarrhea. Authorities had blocked Liu from accessing funds that supporters have sent to the detention center for her. She was even prevented from buying medicine to treat a severe bout of diarrhea. In August 2013, Liu who has suffered from a stomach illness, was reportedly still sick in detention. Her lawyer raised the issue of torture during the trial, but the court refused to dismiss evidence or a confession that may have been extracted from torture. The court also refused to file a case to investigate the allegation of torture. Her family members have been put under soft detention and warned not to speak to media, and one of her lawyers suffered retaliation for taking on her case. The charge of “unlawful assembly” was unexpectedly changed to “creating a disturbance” just prior to sentencing.
Born in 1964, Liu began her activism in 2009 by fighting for labor rights. In 2011, she ran for a seat in the local People’s Congress and was held for several days before and during the election. Liu has been a frequent victim of arbitrary detention, and her family has suffered from retaliatory actions by local authorities. Before her current detention, Liu joined an anti-corruption campaign and demanded the Chinese government ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. She is also part of the “New Citizens’ Movement,” a loose group of activists that promotes social justice and political and legal reforms. She was tried alongside Li Sihua (李思华) and Wei Zhongping (魏忠平).