Guo Feixiong’s Lawyers Will Not Attend Trial if Court Denies Access to Case Materials
Chen Guangwu, Zhang Xuezhong
In a statement issued the day before Guo Feixiong’s trial, Guo’s lawyers, Chen Guangwu and Zhang Xuezhong, citing serious procedural violations by the court, request postponement of the trial and that the court allow them to make photo copies of all the case materials so that they can review them before the trial. The lawyers state that if they are not allowed to photocopy core evidence, they will not attend the trial on September 12, 2014.
The lawyers lists five areas of procedural violations by the court.
- The court’s denial of the defense lawyers’ right to review case materials, which include core evidence in the case against Guo Feixiong, is a violation of Article 38 of the Criminal Procedure Law and makes it impossible for the lawyers to mount an effective defense.
- The indictment was issued against Guo Feixiong and four other individuals, who should be tried, in accordance with a Supreme People’s Court’s interpretation of the Criminal Procedure Law. More importantly, in cases of “gathering a crowd to disrupt order in a public place,” only the “participants of chief importance” are criminally liable. Therefore, if the defendants in the same case are tried separately, it would be difficult to determine who the participants of chief importance are.
- The court’s requirement that defense lawyers use only court computers has no legal basis.
- Without informing the defendant of his right to request jurors to be part of the collegial, the court appointed one judge and two deputy judges to form the collegial court. This violates regulations issued by the NPC Standing Committee and the Supreme People’s Court.
- The court did not notify the defense lawyers of the trial date three days before the trial.