UPDATED: Zhejiang authorities detain human rights lawyer Zhang Kai for six months in 'black jail'

Monday, August 31, 2015

Zhang Kai (right) in Washington, D.C.
(Photo: China Aid)
China Aid
By Rachel Ritchie

Updated at 9:56 a.m. CDT, on Sept. 14, 2015.

(Wenzhou, Zhejiang—Aug. 31, 2015) The extended detention of human rights lawyer Zhang Kai will include six months in a black jail for “gathering a crowd to disturb public order” and the more serious charge of  “stealing, spying, buying and illegally providing state secrets and intelligence to entities outside of China” according to information that has recently come to light.

In addition to the six months Zhang will spend sequestered in an undisclosed location, he will also be denied access to legal representation because his alleged crimes relate to national security, according to the Wenzhou Municipal Public Security Bureau, which is responsible for Zhang’s imprisonment.

“The enforced disappearance of a renowned religious freedom defense lawyer, Zhang Kai, and his subsequent arbitrary detention in a black jail for six months is absolutely outrageous to the international community,” Bob Fu, China Aid’s founder and president, said. “He did nothing but legally defend hundreds of churches’ crosses from being barbarically demolished by the Zhejiang government. Free world leaders, especially President Obama, should make it clear to President Xi Jinping that these acts of total disregard for basic human rights and religious freedom should and will be condemned by all during Xi’s visit to the United Nations and the United States next month.”
Zhang Kai (third from left) with China Aid founder and
president Bob Fu during a trip to Washington, D.C.
(Photo: China Aid)

Most torture of Chinese prisoners takes place while they are imprisoned in black jails, which are holding centers located outside the detention center. While authorities from the court system are entitled to supervise such kind of holding cells, they rarely make use of the allowance.

Zhang Kai was arrested on Aug. 25 and remained in police custody for three days before authorities released any official information. During this time, the director of his law firm published a statement affirming the legality of Zhang’s activity in Zhejiang and calling for his immediate and unconditional release.

China Aid Contacts
Rachel Ritchie, English Media Director
Cell: (432) 553-1080 | Office: 1+ (888) 889-7757 | Other: (432) 689-6985
Email: r.ritchie@chinaaid.org
Website: www.chinaaid.org