A case study of China’s rule of law, or lack thereof. From Yulun Jiandu and other sources, compiled and translated by CDT:
Jiangxi Provincial High Court a couple of days ago handed out an official letter to journalists Xu Xiang (ÂæêÁ••) and Li Xinde to accuse them of libel in a recent expose story and asked them to turn themselves in, or cooperate with, an investigation at the court by March 9.
“The article ‘Jiangxi High Court Vice President Illegally Handles Case and Ruins Multimillionaire,’ which was written by you and publicized on the web, seriously distorted facts and willfully libelled court officials, gravely disrupting work at the court,” the red-stamp document says. “Now [we order] you immediately eliminate the consequences and come to the High Court to receive investigation by March 9.”
Li Xinde challenges the court’s letter and charges of libel and, in a letter on his web site, published two screenshots of the Jiangxi court’s web site, on two days, one showing the digital version of the official letter and the other displaying a blank page, where the letter was taken off the site.
Li criticizes the court’s willful abuse of power that “it served both as an athlete and a referee in the same game.” The libel charge was not filed by the vice president, who was accused by journalists of corruption, neither was the case handled by the police, Li notes. [Full Text in Chinese]
In the corruption expose (Chinese), authored by Xu, Jiangxi High Court vice president Guo Bing (ÈÉ≠ÂÖµ) was alleged to be a mastermind behind the handling of a case involving a web of real estate development deals and enriching himself by arranging transactions even though the transactions meant loss of state assets. And one of a local multimillionaires, who ran a hotel business, found his properties confisticated and his business disrupted by power outages for “failing to pay power bills.” All of these problems, according to the expose, were a result of “offending a big shot,” that being the court vice president.