A Chinese Attorney Stands Up for What He Knows To Be Right

A Chinese Attorney Stands Up for What He Knows To Be Right

By a Clearwisdom correspondent from Gansu Province, China

(Clearwisdom.net) At 9:00 a.m. on December 1, 2011, the Xifeng District Court in Qingyang City, Gansu Province held a second hearing of the charges brought against Mr. Kou Chuangiin. Mr. Kou's attorney, brought in from Beijing to defend him, pleaded not guilty on his behalf. All of those present in the courtroom were thus provided with an opportunity to learn about both the righteous goodness of Falun Gong, and about the brutal truth of the persecution that Falun Gong adherents face under China's communist regime.

Mr. Kou, 60, is a former cadre of the Qingyang Business Bureau. He, his wife Ms. Li Ruihua, and their daughter Ms. Kou Juanjuan, all enjoyed improvements in their health and well-being after they began practicing Falun Gong. However, the Chinese Communist Party has a policy of persecuting Falun Gong, and this has brought great pain to the family.

1. None of the Evidence Presented Showed that Any Law Had Been Broken

During the court's investigation period, the attorney questioned all evidence submitted by the prosecutor and pointed out that all evidence is untenable on the law.

Mr. Kou stated the reason why he practices Falun Gong. He said, “I suffered from liver cancer, stomach cancer, and other illnesses. The hospital declared that I was incurable. Since I started practicing Falun Gong, all my illnesses have disappeared and I have experienced fundamental changes in both my physical health and mental well-being.”

Mr. Kou declared that his arrest and evidence collected against him are illegal. On the day of the arrest, more than a dozen officers from the Xifeng District Police Sub-Bureau pried open Mr. Kou's door and broke into his home. However, none of the officers were wearing police uniforms, and the officers ransacked his home without showing any identification. Mr. Kou saw the search warrant for the first time in court. During the arrest, the officers were violent, throwing him onto the sofa and ordering him not to move. Several people witnessed the arrest, including Mr. Kou's mother, daughter, grandson, and neighbors.

Mr. Kou stated that Falun Gong is a spiritual belief, and that having spiritual beliefs does not violate any law. It is not a crime, nor is it a crime to follow the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance to better oneself. He requested an immediate release.

The prosecutor declared that Falun Gong related documents were extracted from Mr. Kou's computer as “evidence.” She started playing one of them for the courtroom to hear. As the recording began playing on her computer, the words “Traditional Chinese culture teaches us that a promise is as good as a thousand bars of gold ...” sounded out for all to hear. She stopped the recording quickly and began playing it again from another point in the recording. This time, the words, “Traditional Chinese culture teaches us ...” were heard. She stopped it and tried again, but again similar words rang out, “Traditional Chinese ...” She finally just turned it off and carried on.

The prosecutor told the judge, “Here's a recording entitled, 'Ensure your safety by quitting the CCP.'” She tried playing this file, and the following words came out, “Hello, my friend. This is a free phone call to you ...” She stopped playing it. After quite a while, she tried again, “My friend, have you ever joined the CCP, the Youth League, or the Young Pioneers ...” The prosecutor claimed, “This is what we found in Kou's computer. It contains content that is against the CCP.” The people in the gallery who had come to observe the proceedings did not think there was anything wrong with the recordings they heard. Instead, it was apparent that they thought the whole process was actually quite funny.

2. Having Spiritual Beliefs Is Not a Crime – People's Constitutional Rights Are Being Denied

During the proceedings, the attorney maintained Mr. Kou's innocence. He stated that neither Mr. Kou's intentions nor his actions constituted infringements of China's laws or administrative regulations.

The attorney argued that Mr. Kou practiced Falun Gong for the purpose of good health and mental improvement, as well as to better himself by adhering to Falun Gong's standards of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. Belief belongs to the area of ideology and is an issue of the field of the mind. A person's mind cannot commit a crime, as there are no “thought crimes” contained in China's law books. Only one's behaviors may be counted as crimes. No matter what a person believes in, as long as he doesn't commit any criminal act, he is not guilty of any crime.

During the trial, the prosecutor didn't provide any evidence of Mr. Kou's, “using a heretical organization to undermine the implementation of law,” the "crime" with which he had been charged.

(Editor's note: Falun Gong teaches people to be kind. There is extensive evidence, beyond the scope of this particular article, that suggests that in fact it is the Chinese Communist Party that is the true heretical organization. [the Chinese characters for "heretical organization" are often alternatively translated as “cult”] It is the CCP that undermines the execution of China's laws and regulations. It is the CCP that abuses and twists the law to its own end to use as a weapon to aid in the persecution of good people)

What cult or heretical organization did Mr. Kou employ? What kind of an organization is it? What do its members, staff, and management structure look like? Is this organization inside or outside of China? What title does Mr. Kou Chuangjin hold within the organization? What capabilities does he have within the organization? Who does he oversee within the organization? What orders did he give? How did he use the organization? Did he obtain orders or funds from the organization? What laws or administrative regulations has he impaired the execution of?

Distribution of Falun Gong materials doesn't violate China's laws. On the contrary, it is the reflection of the freedoms of speech, expression, and belief that are stipulated in China's constitution. Distribution of Falun Gong materials is therefore not a crime; it is in fact an exercise of citizens' rights under the constitution.

As for the contents of the Falun Gong materials, one type includes contents about Falun Dafa cultivation, such as the books Zhuan Falun and Explaining the Content of Falun Dafa. They are all for teaching people how to cultivate xinxing according to the standards of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. There is nothing illegal in them. They don't practice or encourage the sabotage of any of China's laws or regulations.

Another type of the materials are handouts that proclaim “Falun Dafa is good. Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good.” Others speak of “Destruction of the CCP is heaven's mandate. Quit the CCP and its affiliated organizations for your own safety,” or “The CCP is disintegrating.” Other materials are about Shen Yun Performing Arts and its revival of 5000 years of China's traditional culture. There are also copies of the Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party, “Disintegrating the Party Culture” and so on.

Let's take a look at some of these more closely:

“Falun Dafa is good” is for recommending Falun Gong to others and to illustrate Falun Gong's benefits. It is a behavior of telling the truth and helping others within the range of law. It is definitely not sabotaging any laws. As for “Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance,” these are universal principles acknowledged by all of humankind. The DVDs and other materials about Shen Yun Performing Arts present and spread the essence of the five-thousand-year old Chinese traditional culture. This should be cherished as spiritual treasures. Who would, or who could stand against such principles?

As for “The Destruction of the CCP is heaven's mandate” and “Quit the CCP and its affiliated organizations for safety,” “The CCP is disintegrating” and the Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party, according to the principles of “sovereignty belongs to people,” social contract theory and Article 41 of China's constitution, which states that “Citizens of the People's Republic of China have the right to criticize and make suggestions to any government agencies and staff members,” these materials represent nothing more than citizens exercising their legal rights.

Falun Gong practitioners have been slandered for no reason. With no public channels open to them to exercise their freedom of expression, they instead produce materials with their own money to clarify the truth to people, to expose the lies propagated about Falun Gong in China's state-run media, and to introduce people to the beauty of Falun Gong. What's wrong with that?

Who has seen any Falun Gong practitioners conduct any acts of violence, extreme behavior, or bring harm to others? Of course everyone in China, and even in many other places in the world, has heard about the so-called "self-immolation" on Tiananmen Square. There have also been claims of Falun Gong practitioners being serial killers broadcast over and over in high profile cases on China Central Television (CCTV). But who doesn't realize that CCTV is nothing but a propaganda mouthpiece employed to vilify anything or anyone out of favor with the CCP regime? In fact, no practitioners of Falun Gong are serial killers. And in fact, no practitioners of Falun Gong set themselves on fire on Tiananmen Square. And who could believe that if practitioners were to do a thing so totally against the Falun Gong principles, that they would do it at exactly the same time as multiple CCTV cameras and gangs of Chinese police with fire extinguishers in hand conveniently happened to be on the scene? This so-called “self-immolation incident,” just as with the serial killer story, is nothing but an elaborate propaganda stunt contrived and shamelessly executed by the CCP in attempts to turn public opinion against Falun Gong, and to thus, in some twisted way, thereby “justify” the persecution Falun Gong in the minds of the public.

Just as the attorney pointed out, there are no “thought crimes” in China's law books. Freedom of belief, also known as religious freedom, has become the norm around the world and has been written into Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. China signed on to both of these treaties several years ago.

Article 36 of the Constitution stipulates: “Citizens of People's Republic of China have religious freedom.” Separation of religion and state is a common principle. Religious organizations should not intervene with their members' political choices. States should not intervene with citizens' religious beliefs. No government agencies should attempt to coerce citizens to stop believing in Falun Gong. Government agencies do not have the right to label any spiritual belief as a “cult”or heretical organization. To do so is a political trespass onto the rights of private citizens, and constitutes in and of itself grave human rights violations.

Mr. Kou Chuangjin's belief in and practice of Falun Gong is a reflection of the religious freedom stipulated by the constitution and the exercise of citizens' legal rights. The judicial agencies' framing of Mr. Kou Chuangjin constitutes the crime of “illegally depriving citizens of freedom of religious belief.” This is a crime that should be prosecuted according to the law.

3. The Suppression of Falun Gong In and Of Itself Broadly and Systematically Subverts China's Legal System

As is widely known, the only legal basis the CCP can use to prosecute Falun Gong practitioners is to claim that they have violated Article 300 of the Criminal Law. This applies to anyone “using a heretical organization to subvert the law.” In fact, such claims completely lack both factual and legal bases.

In October 1999, Jiang Zemin unilaterally declared Falun Gong as a cult. It was first broadcast publicly in a Paris-based Le Figaro interview. On October 30, the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress hastily followed up with the "Decision Regarding Banning Heretical Organizations, and Being on Guard Against and Punishing the Activities of Heretical Organizations." Based on this decision, there came out “the Supreme People's Court's Notice Regarding Implementing the National People's Congress Standing Committee's 'Decision Regarding Banning Heretical Organizations, and Being on Guard Against and Punishing Heretical Activities' and the Supreme Court and Supreme Procuratorate's Interpretation.”

In the normal course of events in history, the power and legitimacy of a country's leaders and governing organizations are determined by that country's constitution and laws. In China, there is no law that grants the head of state or the Supreme Court the power to determine whether an organization is a cult.

We cannot thus help but ask, “What is the legal basis for Jiang's speech labeling Falun Gong as an heretical organization? What is the legal basis of the notice from the Supreme Court, and of the interpretation by the Supreme Court and the Supreme Procuratorate? What standard has been applied? Who has given them the power? Were there any hearings? Are those who are determined to belong to the category of cults allowed to defend themselves? If allowed, what is the procedure and which organization is to handle the defense?”

Apparently, neither Jiang's speech nor the Supreme Court notices were authorized in accordance with the law. As a result, they are void of any legal effect and should not be used as the basis for court decisions. The CCP is fully aware of this, and fears having it pointed out. There is not a single law that publicly prohibits practicing Falun Gong. Even the list of 14 cults or heretical organizations compiled by China's Ministry of Public Security does not contain Falun Gong.

As a matter of fact, Falun Gong is loosely organized. There is no hierarchy or organizational structure akin to those exhibited by organized religion, or even government. There is no membership. There are no duties or payments required. One is free to come and go.

In this case, the defendant Mr. Kou Chuangjin is an ordinary citizen, an ordinary Falun Gong practitioner. What ability and power does he possess that could result in undermining the full or partial implementation or application of law and/or administrative rules and regulations? And what law or administrative rule did he undermine? As a result, the defense attorney considered the case lacked sufficient evidence, was short of clear facts, and the charges brought by the prosecution could not hold.

Mr. Kou Chuangjin's behavior has violated no law, and he should be released unconditionally.

The CCP judiciary system uses Article 300 of the Criminal Law, “using a heretical organization to undermine the implementation of law,” as a catch-all charge against Falun Gong practitioners, in absence of actual legal wrongdoing. Under normal logic, one might expect the arresting entity to identify what law the accused has undermined, but the CCP simply makes the broad charge and leaves it at that. It’s analogous to creating a law that says “breaking the law is illegal,” and then charging someone with it, but without evidence of any specific wrongdoing. Such circular validation shows the lack of logic and legitimacy of the CCP. Such absurdity has been the legal basis for sentencing thousands upon thousands of practitioners to terms of forced labor and prison, thus destroying their families and bringing about social turmoil. Falun Gong practitioners have committed no crimes by adhering to their beliefs. It is the CCP itself who systematically undermines the law and sabotages the constitution, all with the state power in their hands.

4. Regarding Law, Justice, and Conscience

During the trial, the defense attorney quoted from Dr. Qian Yuejun's book, Overview of German Law, "The sole purpose of making laws is for the sake of the harmonious development of a society. A law that complies and meets social justice must be a kind one. The sole purpose of establishing a court of law is to uphold social justice, not to protect the law. Therefore, a legal trial must be guided by justice. A judge must make a good judgment of justice and tell right from wrong. The most traditional and the most modern way to rule a case is to go by one's conscience, to use one's conscience to tell a good law from a bad one, and to use one's conscience to determine if a verdict is a just one. In this sense, conscience is the highest principle of law and the ultimate method to make a verdict."

In February 1992, two years after the collapse of the Berlin Wall, former East German border guard Ingo Heinrich was tried in Berlin for killing a young man named Chris Gueffroy as he attempted to flee for freedom in West Berlin.

Heinrich's defense attorney argued that he was merely executing an order to shoot any East Germans attempting to escape to West Germany, and that he therefore had no choice but to kill Gueffroy. The defense attorney pleaded not guilty. But the judge did not approve of the argument. A similar argument had been presented at the Nuremberg Trials after WWII. Governments around the world took the same stance – no one should ask for forgiveness using the excuse that they were under orders when they committed immoral crimes. No one should cross the line of morality with the excuse of following orders.

Judge Theodor Seidel found Heinrich guilty and sentenced him to three and one-half years in prison for manslaughter, without bail. The judge told Heinrich that failing to carry out his orders to “shoot to kill” would have been considered a crime at the time, but missing the target would not be. “As a man with a sound mind, at that moment, you had the right to lift your gun up one centimeter. And that’s the responsibility of conscience that you should bear. In this world, conscience is above the law. When there is a conflict between the law and conscience, conscience, not the law, is the highest guiding principle for any action. Respecting life is a principle that should be upheld everywhere. Before you became a border guard, you should have known that even East German law must not violate the highest guiding principle.”

The "highest guiding principle" (or justice) surpasses any law. If any law violates justice, it becomes an unlawful law. Anyone who follows an unlawful law is violating the law.

Dr. Lung Ying-Tai from Taiwan once asked a former East German border guard, "Do you think it is just to try border guards?" He replied, "Of course it is just. The president ordered them to shoot, but no one ordered that they must not miss! You can argue that you must carry out orders to shoot people [crossing the Berlin Wall], but it is murder if you choose not to miss the target!"

Laws exist to protect people's conscience and justice. The justice system is the final frontier to human conscience and social justice. People place their hope in prosecutors and judges. In China, certain laws and orders severely violate conscience. For example, Article 300 of China's Criminal Law pertaining to evil cults, which has been used by the Chinese justice system to frame, suppress, and persecute innocent Falun Gong practitioners, as well as China's Supreme Court's interpretations on the law in 1999 and 2001, is unjust, and severely violates human conscience, moral values, and social justice. The prosecutors and judges are supposed to know the highest guiding principles of law, yet they violated their own conscience to try innocent Falun Gong practitioners and send them to prison. People practice Falun Gong and follow Falun Gong's principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance because they want to become better people, but in the courts of China they are deprived of their personal freedom, are subjected to cruel tortures, and have even lost their precious lives. Countless families have been torn apart as a result! The persecution of Falun Gong practitioners represents the biggest injustice in human history.

5. It is a Wise Decision to Treat Falun Gong Practitioners with Kindness

In the past few years more and more Falun Gong practitioners tried in China's courts have been given lesser sentences. In fact, many have been retried only to then receive lesser sentences or be found not guilty in the first place. Mr. Kou's defense attorney cited such examples from courts in Hunan, Hubei, Shenyang, Shanghai, Fujian, and Tianjin where Falun Gong practitioners were found not guilty or given probation.

The defense attorney believes that the trend suggested by these cases is a sign that the legal professionals in China are awakening to their conscience and have made wise decisions based on the facts. They have made good choices for their own futures and set good legal precedents for future trials of Falun Gong practitioners.

Finally, Mr. Kou's defense attorney expressed his hope that the judge would not make a political case out of it and urged the judge to follow his conscience and make a just verdict.

The judge then announced that he would delay the verdict until the next hearing. The hearing ended at around 11:15 a.m.


To try a Falun Gong practitioner for his or her belief is an insult against the law. It is by no means a criminal offense to practice Falun Gong; it is instead a persecution of one's spiritual belief, and an offense against human rights. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been using China's justice system, including the police, prosecutors, and judges, as a tool to suppress its dissidents. China's justice system no longer upholds justice.

A nation's legal resources should be used to fight violence, crimes, corruption, and other criminal offenses. They should be used to protect taxpayers' lives, freedoms, and property. They should not be used to suppress kindhearted, law-abiding citizens who have a personal belief that is different from that of the ruling party. Those who follow Falun Gong's principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance will never endanger society. Instead, they will only benefit society. If only there were more people who follow the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, then China's society would surely achieve greater harmony and stability. It is just like what Mr. Li Hongzhi, the founder of Falun Gong, said,

"If everyone searches internally and considers how to conduct himself or herself well, I would say that society will stabilize and the human moral standard will improve again." ("Upgrading Xinxing," from Lecture Four of Zhuan Falun)

It is a heavenly principle that heaven will ultimately reward acts of goodness and punish acts of evil. This is the ultimate guiding principle of all laws and verdicts. Everyone is writing his or her history with his or her own actions. Every person decides his or her own future. It is a crime to sentence a Falun Gong practitioner knowing he or she is innocent. No one can justify that action using the excuse that he or she is only carrying out orders to persecute Falun Gong practitioners. We hope that the prosecutors and judges involved in the trial against Mr. Kou will follow their conscience and moral values, and rule in this and other cases justly. Make the right choice to find Mr. Kou not guilty and release him.

Persons involved in the persecution:

Qiangyang City 610 Office:
Shi Jianguo, director: +86-934-8237199, +86-13993496862 (Cell)
Wen Shixin, deputy director: +86-934-8228324, +86-13993422797 (Cell)
Zhang Jinming, officer: +86-934-8237189, +86-13369348596 (Cell)

Liu Hongtao, deputy head of the Qingyang City Political and Judiciary Committee: +86-934-8237195, +86-13809343001 (Cell)

Qingyang City Police Department:
Director: +86-934-8868281
Deputy director: +86-934-8868282

Posting date: 1/12/2012
Category: Persecution Accounts
Chinese version available at