Yang Hua attends pre-trial meeting, lawyer predicts December trial



Friday, November 18, 2016

Huoshi Church pastor Yang Hua poses
with his wife and two children.
(Photo: China Aid)
China Aid
Reported in Chinese by Qiao Nong.

(Guiyang, Guizhou—Nov. 18, 2016) Incarcerated house church pastor Yang Hua attended a pre-trial meeting in China’s central Guizhou province to discuss his case on Wednesday, which one of his lawyers predicts will be heard in December.

Yang, the pastor of Huoshi Church, obtained permission to participate in his own pre-hearing meeting, which occurred on Nov. 16. According to his lawyer, Chen Jiangang, officials convened the meeting to address procedural issues and for the defendant to communicate his requests to the judge.

“We raised a lot of [requests]. The first pertains to an appraised document [Editor's  note: This document determined whether or not the case was secret]. We requested that the staff who evaluated the document appear in court; however, yesterday, in the court of law, something quite unexpected and absurd happened; the court’s personnel said [this document] hadn’t been appraised by anyone. The document had been stamped with the official seal. The court of law said that a [secret document] is legal; consequently [no one] would be allowed to appear in court. Who was the evaluator of the document? Right now, no one dares to admit to it.”

Because Yang has been charged with “divulging state secrets,” authorities classified his case as secretive and did not notify his family members of the meeting.

One of Yang’s lawyers, Chen Jiangang, said the trial will probably begin next month.

China Aid exposes abuses, such as those suffered by Yang Hua, in order to stand in solidarity with persecuted Christians and promoting religious freedom in China.


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