Human rights activists Su Changlan and Chen Qitang (also known as Tian Li), both from Foshan, Guangdong Province, were tried for and convicted of “subversion of state power” on March 31, 2017 in Foshan Intermediate Court. In separate announcements, the court sentenced Su to three-years’ imprisonment with three-years’ deprivation of political rights, and sentenced Chen to four-and-a-half-years’ imprisonment with three-years’ deprivation of political rights.
In both cases, the detention periods were twice extended to allow for further investigation, the cases twice returned by the procuratorate for additional investigation, and their trial deadlines were extended by the court five times. Both Su and Chen were not permitted to meet with lawyers during the criminal investigation stage. During the reading of the judgment in Su’s case, only the prosecutor’s case and the court’s decision were read, without reference to Su’s defense lawyer’s arguments. Su was also denied the opportunity to give supplementary evidence for defense, and was not asked whether she wished to appeal before the end of the sentencing hearing.