11/16/2006, 00.00
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Shandong: cyber-dissident gets two-year jail term for criticizing regime

Li Jianping, who was part of the Tiananmen Square movement, spent 500 days in detention before being sentenced.

Zibo (AsiaNews) – Zibo City Intermediate People's Court has sentenced cyber-dissident Li Jianping to two years in prison after finding him guilty of "incitement to subvert state power". The judges handed down the verdict six months after he went to trial and more than 500 days after he was first detained

This was reported by Human Rights in China, a US-based organization that lobbies for human rights in China. The verdict was based on some articles criticizing government corruption and violence against minorities published by Li on websites run by Chinese overseas.

The dissident, 40, participated in the 1989 pro-democracy and anti-corruption movement that was crushed by the government in the Tiananmen Square massacre. He was involved in the setting up of the Independent Federation of Shanghai Universities.

After the violent repression of the protests, he survived by working in a medical supplies business in Zibo City, in the eastern province of Shandong, continuing however to criticize the regime via internet.

On 27 May 2005, police officers came to Li's home to carry out an "Internet security inspection," and detained him after finding "indecent" images in his computer. He was formally arrested on 30 June of the same year.

During the first hearing of his trial on 12 April 2006, the prosecution presented 31 articles Li had written criticizing the regime and denouncing abuses of human rights in the province. After hearing the charges, the judges did not pass sentence; the verdict was handed down only on 25 October.

China's Criminal Procedure Law provides for a maximum of one and a half months for an indictment to be issued; law makers allow one month more for "major" or "complex" cases.

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See also
Another three Chinese dissidents in prison
Police watchful ahead of June 4
Pro-democracy activist Wang Rongqing sentenced to six years for "subversion"
Party official issues urgent call for democratic reforms
Chinese dissidents call on UN to intervene over human rights


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