Court re­hears crime case

Three de­fen­dants claim ev­i­dence was lack­ing and im­proper le­gal pro­ce­dures were used

China Daily (USA) - - CHINA - By HANJUNHONG in Changchun and CAO YIN in Bei­jing Con­tact the writ­ers at caoyin@chi­

The Sec­ond Cir­cuit of the Supreme Peo­ple’s Court is re­hear­ing a case af­ter three de­fen­dants claimed that the ev­i­dence for their con­vic­tions was in­suf­fi­cient and the le­gal pro­ce­dures were wrong.

Three judges of the court, which is based in Shenyang, Liaon­ing province, came to Changchun In­ter­me­di­ate Peo­ple’s Court in Jilin province to hear the case.

The de­fen­dants, Sun Baoguo, Sun Baodong and Sun Baomin — all broth­ers — did not plead guilty dur­ing the re­trial, say­ing that the orig­i­nal judg­ments were made with un­clear facts and in­suf­fi­cient ev­i­dence.

The orig­i­nal case in­volved 16 de­fen­dants, who were con­victed of sev­eral crim­i­nal charges, in­clud­ing homi­cide and black­mail.

Sun Baoguo said that he was tor­tured dur­ing the in­ves­ti­ga­tion, and his youngest brother, Sun Baomin, also pro­vided new ev­i­dence against his black­mail con­vic­tion.

“We hope the cir­cuit court re­views our case care­fully, giv­ing us a fair judg­ment,” the three said.

The Jilin Provin­cial High Peo­ple’s Court in 2012 sen­tenced Sun Baoguo to death with a two-year re­prieve for con­vic­tions on 13 charges in­clud­ing homi­cide and lead­ing a gang. Sun Baodong re­ceived a sen­tence of 19 years and Sun Baomin was given 10 1/2 years in jail.

How­ever, the broth­ers dis­agreed that pre­vi­ous sen­tences for of­fenses in 1996, as well as the judg­ment for the first trial in 2011, should af­fect their lat­est sen­tences “as they have been fin­ished and we’ve served the pun­ish­ment al­ready”.

In 1996, Sun Baoguo and Sun Baodong struck sev­eral passers-by dur­ing a dis­pute at a rail­way sta­tion in Liaon­ing, caus­ing one death and four in­juries.

They were found guilty of in­ten­tional in­jury in 1997 at a Liaon­ing court and given short sen­tences.

The two broth­ers were brought to court again in 2011 on al­le­ga­tions of or­ga­niz­ing and lead­ing a gang to black­mail oth­ers, and for dis­turb­ing the public or­der. Sun Baomin was also in­volved in the al­leged black­mail.

The top court set up two cir­cuit courts in 2015 to ease its bur­den and to pre­vent lo­cal gov­ern­ments from in­ter­fer­ing in cases. One court is in Shenyang, and is in charge of cases in Hei­longjiang, Liaon­ing and Jilin prov­inces, while the other is in Shen­zhen, serv­ing cases in Guang­dong and Hainan prov­inces and the Guangxi Zhuang au­ton­o­mous re­gion.

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