In an op-ed at The New York Times, Mirror Media Group founder Ho Pin presents his own account of publishing the leaked Party memo Document No. 9. The document, which outlines “seven perils” facing Party rule, was at the center of journalist Gao Yu’s recent conviction for leaking state secrets abroad: the 71-year-old was sentenced to seven years in prison based on an allegedly forced confession, while Ho’s testimony that he had received the document from other quarters was ignored.
One evening in June 2013, I received a call from a man who identified himself as an official for the Chinese Communist Party’s Propaganda Department in Beijing. He asked me to publish an internal party directive on Mingjing, a Chinese-language news portal I run out of New York.
[…] Before Ms. Gao’s trial in November 2014, I drafted an affidavit detailing how I had received Document No.9 from a party propaganda official. The Chinese Consulate in New York refused my notarized statement. I then FedExed it to Ms. Gao’s defense attorney, but the Beijing Third Intermediate People’s Court excluded my testimony in its deliberation.
[…] Ms. Gao’s real crime had nothing to do with leaking Document No.9. She offended the authorities by speaking out against government policies. Even though Mr. Xi has recently announced plans to make the legal system more transparent, Ms. Gao’s conviction shows that nothing has changed under a dictator who cannot abide dissenting views. [Source]