Saturday, July 11, 2009

Lawyer Chained to Basketball Hoops

A Yunnan judge ordered a lawyer public humiliation. Mr. He pointed to the basketball hoops he had been chained to.

Mr. He represented a client in First Civil Court or Chengjiang County, Yuxi Metropolitan, Yunnan Province in the morning of July 10, 2009. During the court deliberation, Mr. He asked the presiding judge, Mr. Hong, what is the court's opinion as to his client's intention to add the defendant's spouse to the case filed to the court 15 days ago. Judge Hong replied, that would be not necessary, 'as I am orally notifying you now'. Later, Judge Hong asked the attorneys to sign on the transcript. Mr. He noticed the exchange about adding defendant's spouse was missing from the transcript. Mr. He refused to sign the transcript until it is corrected.

Judge Hong then ordered a deputy sheriff to lock the lawyer to a basketball hoops in public.

The lawyer, Mr. He told reporters that he had no contention to the court's power of arresting lawyers. However, it needs approval from the Chief Judge of a court according to the law. He alleged that it was unlawful to have a lawyer locked up by a judge without approval of the chief judge of a court.

Mr. Hong Jiajing, Deputy Chief Judge of Chengjiang County told the reporter that it is a common practice (the judge not following proper procedure) because they have a heavy workload. Mr. Pan Wanhong, the Chief Judge told the reporter that he did not want to comment.

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