Chinese Lawyer Xie Yang Tortured for Confession

Xie Yang, a Chinese Lawyer, tortured in Changsha, China, Jul 2015, is still in jail in the Changsha City Public Security No. 2 Detention Center. He has not been released.

Xie Yang, a Chinese Lawyer, tortured in Changsha, China, Jul 2015, is still in jail in the Changsha City Public Security No. 2 Detention Center. He has not been released.

Here I am, in Toronto, Canada, reading this translation about the torture of a Chinese lawyer, a human rights lawyer, Xie Yang 谢阳, in Changsha, China. I’m just not used to this kind of abuse on another human being. Yes, I’m soft. Under Canada’s legal system, torture in order to get a conviction would lead to the exclusion of all documents and evidence gained while under torture. This is just and fair. Evidence gained while using torture cannot be considered credible nor truthful. When someone fears for their life or the lives of their family and friends, they will admit to anything if pushed sufficiently hard. Truth is more important than just getting a conviction, as you may be convicting the wrong person.

First hand accounts of torture in China are pretty rare. Most people who are tortured clam up. I know I would, otherwise you’d have the police at your door hauling you away for yet another wailing. Xie Yang, a lawyer in China, is a different breed of man, courageous enough to document his torment, name is tormentors, in a series of interviews with his lawyers. When a lawyer documents his torture to his own lawyers you know it has to be a terrible experience. Xie Yang is still incarcerated. I hope he survives his ordeal and has no long lasting psychological scars.

Xie Yang was arrested and sent to an unknown location, where police tell no one your whereabouts. They can interrogate you for 6 months. Your family and friends have no idea where you went. It is called “residential surveillance in a designated location”, or RSDL.

Canada is considering a bilateral extradition agreement with China. There are skeptics that do not trust the Chinese government and legal system will live up to Canada’s demands for no capital punishment and no torture, if Canada returns a Chinese citizen to China. How would Canada audit and ensure our demands are met? We, as Canadians, have no real way of ensuring that our level of human rights will be upheld in China. Canada is out of their league when it comes to auditing human rights. Canada has so much more to learn about China.

This case, terrifying as it is for Xie Yang, is an example of just how different China and Canada’s justice systems function. While on the surface we both have lawyers, judges and police, the way they work and the adherence to the rule of law are completely different. China does not follow their law.

Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi goes ape at a Canadian journalist when asked about China's human rights. So angry, so arrogant, so lacking in manners. A minister of foreign affairs should have some respect for the culture of other countries, and he clearly does not. China can do much better. The Queen was right.

Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi goes ape at a Canadian journalist when asked about China’s human rights. So angry, so arrogant, so lacking in manners. A minister of foreign affairs should have some respect for the culture of other countries, and he clearly does not. China can do much better. The Queen was right.

I publish this case in order to refute China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who came to Canada in 2016 stating adamantly that China respects human rights in China. Yes, I’m sure that Chinese people know best about China’s human rights situation, and for sure Lawyer Xie Yang. That torture is in China law means nothing if the law is not enforced. Lawyer Xie Yang’s case is a clear case of human rights abuse. I suggest that Wang Yi act on his words, investigate and release Xie Yang from detention.

“Other people don’t know better than the Chinese people about the human rights condition in China and it is the Chinese people who are in the best situation, in the best position to have a say about China’s human rights situation,…So I would like to suggest to you that please don’t ask questions in such an irresponsible manner. We welcome goodwill suggestions but we reject groundless or unwarranted accusations… And do you know China has written protection and promotion of human rights into our constitution?” source

Torture to get a confession and using violence to get evidence is illegal in China, but the police flaunt it with impunity. In face China has signed the UN Convention against Torture in 1988. There should be no reason a signatory of this convention should not follow this UN mandate. Clearly China does not follow its own laws.

According to these lawyers, the accused Changsha police officers should be investigated for “torturing to force confession” and “using violence to extract evidence” under the Criminal Law (Art. 247). In addition, the CPL states that procurators must investigate accusations of forced confessions (Article 55). Under Article 12 of the Convention against Torture, to which China has been a party since 1988, the Chinese government is obligated to conduct prompt and impartial investigation into accusations of acts of torture committed…source

Torture Methods Used:
-shackled at all times
-sleep deprivation: 2-3 hrs sleep, interrogation by 5 shifts of police 5 hrs each
-beatings
-threats of violence such that he would be a cripple
-sitting in on a perch for 20 hours, threatened with beating if he falls off
-any movement not approved by officers considered an attack on police and thus a beating is reasonable
-threats of violence against his wife, child and family (brother, nephew), as well as threats to interrogate his friends, coworkers
-deprivation of food and water
-unable to go to the washroom
-no medical treatment for injuries
-threaten with detention for 6 months, no one knows your whereabouts
-blow smoke in his face
-in detention center, not allowed to buy enough food and supplies

What police wanted:
-confession that he was anti-party, anti-socialist
-only 3 types of acceptable confessions: for fame, for profit, or to oppose the Party and socialism
-implication of other lawyers that participated in a Wechat discussion group, or other citizens
-admission of guilt, admission that no torture was used

Police tactics:
-The use of Wechat groups to show inclusion into an organization, even if there is no formal organization, and to implicate others
-no id, no uniform, no names, no complete records of sessions
-5 shifts of 5 hrs each, around the clock interrogation, sleep deprivation
-no written transcripts of interrogation for first 7 days
-confession in order to sleep
-written confessions, interview notes not submitted
-police would type up transcripts, he was forced to sign
-food in exchange for cooperation, signing statements
-after torture broke his will, increased guards from 2 to 4 to ensure no suicide
-police wrote and typed up transcripts, he signed them
-force other prisoners to isolate him
-not allowing private meeting with lawyer, police always in room, within earshot
-if he admitted guilt he would not be able to work as a lawyer ever again
-not able to meet with lawyers within 48 hrs, as by law
-police put pressure on wife to stop proclaiming he was innocent

References:
Chinese: http://www.msguancha.com/a/lanmu4/2017/0119/15421.html http://www.msguancha.com/a/lanmu4/2017/0119/15425.html
English translation: Thank you very much, China Change.org, for your great effort 1, 2, 3, 4
NYT: Punches, Kicks and the ‘Dangling Chair’: Detainee Tells of Torture in China
https://wqw2010.blogspot.ca/2017/01/blog-post_23.html
Canada, 10 other countries call out China for torturing human rights lawyers
Residential Surveillance at Designated Location RSDL
The People’s Republic of the Disappeared: Stories from inside China’s system for enforced disappearances
Abductions by Chinese authorities detailed in US-published book
Chinese rights lawyer escapes jail term after admitting subversion: Xie Yang confesses, given no jail time

时间: 2017年01月04日15:08:56开始;
地点:长沙第二看守所西二会见室;
被会见人谢阳,以下简称谢;
会见人 陈建刚律师、刘正清律师,以下简称律师;
记录: 陈建刚 ;
律师: 谢阳你好,我们是你妻子陈桂秋为你聘请的辩护律师陈建刚和刘正清,你是否同意?
谢:同意,我同意委托你们为我辩护。
律师: 今天我需要向你了解一下有关案件的情况,请你慢慢向我介绍一下你被抓捕、被审讯的情况好吗?
谢:我是2015年7月11日凌晨在怀化市洪江市托口镇黔洲大酒店被抓。我当时在休息,来了好多人,有便衣也有穿警察制服的,强行进入我休息的房间,没有给我出示任何证件,但是给我看了一张传唤证,然后直接把我带走了,带到洪江市公安局。我身上所有的东西,包括手机、电脑、身份证、律师证、钱包、银行卡、公文包等所有东西都被抢走了。把我带下楼后我发现有三台车,共计十多人来抓我。
律师: 到了洪江市公安局,下一步做了什么?
谢:到公安局的时候大约是凌晨6点,天刚蒙蒙亮。有人把我带到执法办案区的一个房间,让我坐在一个审讯椅,也就是一个铁椅子,我坐上去之后就锁上了。然后他们就对我不管不问了,一直这样锁着我。
律师: 当时有说对你拘留或者逮捕吗?为什么立即把你锁起来?
谢:没有啊,没有说对我采取任何法定强制措施,上来就把我锁起来,一锁就是三个多小时,没人管,我就这样一直被锁着。
律师: 然后呢?
谢:到了大概9点多,来了两个警察,也没有给我出示任何手续和身份证件。他们口音绝对不是洪江本地的警察,也不是去抓捕我的人,是后来才来的。
律师: 他们找你问了什么?
谢:他们问我是否加入了“人权律师团这个非法组织”,还问了人权律师团的一些相关情况。我说据我所知没有“人权律师团”这样一个组织,他们说在微信上有这样一个聊天群,我说我在这个群里。他们说“这个群里面的律师具有反党反社会主义的属性”,然后又询问了谁是组织者、都干了什么事等等。
律师: 你是如何回答的?
谢:我回答这个群里面几乎都是律师,这只是我们有共同兴趣的人建立的一个群,是一个交流平台,没有任何组织者,每个人都是独立 平等的,相互之间没有隶属关系,仅仅是交流聊天所用,会发布一些信息,大家相互交流,甚至开玩笑等等。
律师: 然后呢?
谢:然后警察又问我,你们是否对外以“人权律师团”的名义对一些案件发表连署声明和意见,我说是这样,这都是我们个人的行为,联署也是个人行为,个人自愿。然后又问我是否愿意退出人权律师团,我说首先我没有加入“人权律师团”这样一个组织,既然没有加入就谈不上退出。然后他们又问我是否愿意退出“人权律师团”这个聊天群,我说这是我的自由,你们无权干涉。
律师: 再然后呢?
谢:他们告诉我公安部目前对微信“人权律师团”这个聊天群有了定性,说这个群里面的律师是反党反社会主义,希望我能认清形势,如果我能积极配合他们,我可能会获得宽大的处理。这个过程持续了大概一个多小时,他们最后对我说“北京和省里面的领导都过来了,如果你能退出人权律师团的话,你能获得宽大的处理。”我就问你们所说的宽大处理是怎么回事?他们说,你应该知道,现在全国对人权律师团的律师进行约谈,如果你仍然执迷不悟的话,就有可能追究你的责任。
律师:然后呢?
谢:我当时以为仅仅是找我约谈,如果我答应退出人权律师团这个群。但我仍然表示这个群仅仅是个聊天群而已。他们给我做了笔录,仅仅两页纸,就是关于聊天群的事情,传唤证上说聚众扰乱单位秩序,但是笔录上对此只字未提。还问了我一些我参与的一些案件,比如建三江案、庆安枪击案等。我说我参与了。他们问是谁指使我干的,我说我是自己愿意去的,没有任何人指使我,并且我已经办理了委托手续,这是我正常的执业范围。我看了我案子的案卷,当时的这份笔录并没有附在本案案卷中。
律师: 做完笔录然后呢?
谢:做完笔录后,他们说对我我态度比较满意,需要向领导汇报一下,还说我应当能获得从宽处理。他们就离开了。大约十多分钟,时间大约是10:30分以后,来了一个警察,给我做了自我介绍,他叫李克伟,是负责我的案件的领导。我问他你是多大的领导?他用手向上画了一个圈,说“这整个大楼(洪江市公安局)都归我管。”我当时猜他大概是长沙市公安局的局长或者副局长。我后来知道他是长沙市公安局国保支队支队长李克伟。
律师: 然后呢?
谢:他告诉我,说对我的态度很不满意。说我对我自己的事情都是轻描淡写,“对你自己的事情没有从骨子里面进行反思,还需要给你重新做笔录,否则你不能获得我们的宽大处理。”我当时对他们这种出尔反尔的做法很失望,我问你所说的“从骨子里反思”应该怎样反思?有什么标准?他说“标准由我们来掌握。”我说你们掌握标准,而这个标准又没有可衡量性,我对你们的诚信极度失望。我不愿意和你们合作。
律师: 然后呢?
谢:他们又一个警察拿来我的手机,给我要密码,要开我的手机。我说你们没有这样权利,我拒绝了。后来我知道这个警察是怀化市国保支队的警察,是一个负责人,但不知道什么名字。
律师: 再然后?
谢:李克伟对我说不是针对我来的,还是希望我能转变态度,能积极配合他们。然后中午吃饭,饭后没有继续往下谈,一直到下午五六点钟。警察中安排了一个辅警陪着我,晚上的时候不让我睡觉,我就这样被锁着,一直锁到天亮。整个晚上辅警眼睛盯着我,不让我睡觉。我一闭眼睛打盹,他们就推我,拍我,训斥我,我就这样被逼睁着眼睛到天亮。
律师: 天亮以后呢?
谢:大概凌晨5点多,突然进来五六个人,有便衣有穿制服的,他们拿来一份《监视居住决定书》的传真件,让我签字,我签过字后,他们就把我带上了警车拉走了。一直拉到长沙去,直接去了开福区德雅路732号国防科技大学第一干休所,这是案卷中显示的,我被带进去之后完全不知道这是什么地方,我只是能确定这是在长沙,但在什么地方我不知道。在车上,有一个叫做李峰的警察,我后来知道他是湖南省公安厅国保总队的人,他给我讲我已经错过了一次机会了,希望我能把握住第二次机会,在制定监视居住期间能对他们积极配合,然后他向上级汇报,争取对我宽大处理。我想我办的事情都是光明正大的,没有什么需要隐瞒的,我就告诉了他们我的手机密码,他一路上查看我的手机微信。他对我做过的事情很熟悉。
律师: 然后呢?
谢:到长沙带我到关押地点的时候大概是2015年7月12日中午的时间。他们把我带到那个酒店,从一个小门进去的,两个警察从左右分别抓着我胳膊按着我脖子把我押着往前走,把我带到二楼一个房间,我后来知道是207房。房间就是一个比较小的房间,有一张小床,两张桌子,有两把椅子。从门口进门,左上方有一个摄像头。
律师: 你进去之后呢?
谢:他们把我带进去之后,让我坐在椅子上面,有三个人陪着我,他们不是警察,我后来知道他们是陪护人员。
【今日到此为止2017年01月04日16:54:45】

Date: January 4, 2017, 3:08:56 p.m. (interview start)

Location: Interview Room 2W, Changsha Number Two Detention Center
Interviewee: Xie Yang (谢阳, “Xie”)
Interviewers: Lawyers Chen Jiangang (陈建刚) and Liu Zhengqing (刘正清) (“Lawyers”)
Transcription by Chen Jian’gang

Lawyers: Hello, Xie Yang. We are Chen Jian’gang and Liu Zhengqing, defense lawyers hired by your wife, Chen Guiqiu (陈桂秋). Do you agree to these arrangements?

XIE: Yes, I agree to appoint you as my defense counsel.

LAWYERS: Today, we need to ask you some questions regarding the case. Could you please take your time and describe the circumstances of your detention and interrogation?

XIE: I was picked up in the early morning hours of July 11, 2015, at the Qianzhou Hotel in Hongjiang City, Hunan (湖南怀化洪江市托口镇黔洲大酒店). As I was sleeping, a bunch of people—some in plain clothes and others in police uniform—forced their way into my room. They didn’t display any identification but showed me an official summons for questioning before taking me away to the Hongjiang City Public Security Bureau. Everything I had with me, including my mobile phone, computer, identification card, lawyer’s license, wallet, bank cards, and briefcase were confiscated. When they got me downstairs, I saw there were three cars waiting. They sent around a dozen or so people to detain me.

LAWYERS: What happened next after you got to the Hongjiang City Public Security Bureau?

XIE: It was around 6 a.m. when we arrived at the station, at the crack of dawn. Someone took me to a room in the investigations unit and had me sit in an interrogation chair—the so-called “iron chair.” Once I sat down, they locked me into the shackles on the chair. From that point, I was shackled in whether or not they were questioning me.

LAWYERS: Did anyone at the time say that you had been placed under detention or arrest? Why did they immediately shackle you?

XIE: No, no one said anything about placing me under any of the statutory coercive measures. They just shackled me right away, and that’s how I stayed for over three hours. No one cared—they just left me shackled like that.

LAWYERS: What happened next?

XIE: Sometime after 9 a.m., two police officers came in. Neither of them showed me any paperwork or identification, either. I could tell by their accents that they weren’t local police from Hongjiang. They hadn’t been among the group that detained me, so they must have come later.

LAWYERS: What questions did they ask you?

XIE: They asked me whether I’d joined “that illegal organization the ‘Human Rights LAWYERS Group’” (人权律师团) and some other questions about the Human Rights Lawyers Group. I said that as far as I knew there was no organization called the “Human Rights Lawyers Group.” They said there was a chat group on WeChat, and I said I was a member of that group. They said: “The lawyers in that group are anti-Party and anti-socialist in nature.” Then they asked questions about who organized the group, what sort of things it did, and so on.

LAWYERS: How did you answer them?

XIE: I said that almost all the members of this group were lawyers and that it was a group set up by people with a common interest. I said it was a place for us to exchange information and that there was no organizer—everyone was independent and equal and there was no hierarchy of any kind. It was only a group for exchanging information and chatting amongst each other, sometimes even cracking jokes and things like that.

LAWYERS: What then?

XIE: Then, one of the officers asked whether we’d publicly issued any joint statements or opinions regarding certain cases in the name of the “Human Rights Lawyers Group.” I said that we had and that this was an act we took as individuals and that we signed as individuals, voluntarily.

Then they asked whether I was willing to quit the Human Rights Lawyers Group. I said that, first of all, since I hadn’t joined any organization called “Human Rights Lawyers Group,” there was no way I could leave it. Then they asked whether I’d be willing to quit the “Human Rights Lawyers Group” chat group. I said that I had the freedom to be part of the chat group and that they had no right to interfere.

LAWYERS: What happened after that?

XIE: They told me the Ministry of Public Security had passed judgment on the chat group known as the “Human Rights Lawyers Group,” saying that there were anti-Party, anti-socialist lawyers in the group. They said they hoped that I could see the situation clearly and that I’d be treated leniently if I cooperated with them. This lasted for more than an hour. They finally said: “Leaders in Beijing and the province are all involved in this case. If you quit the Human Rights Lawyers Group, you’ll be treated leniently.” I asked what they meant by “leniently.” They said I should know that lawyers from the group were being questioned throughout the country and said that there was a possibility that I’d be prosecuted if I continued to refuse to come to my senses.

LAWYERS: What then?

XIE: At the time I thought they’d only brought me in for a talking-to and to see whether I’d agree to quit the group. But I continued to say that the group was only a chat group. They made me give a statement to sign, two pages long, regarding the chat group. The summons said they were investigating “gathering a crowd to disrupt order in a work unit,” but there was no mention of that in the statement. They also asked me about some of the cases I’d been involved in, such as the Jiansanjiang case (建三江案) and the Qing’an shooting case (庆安枪击案). I told them I’d taken part, and they asked me who’d instructed me to do so. I said I went to take part in those cases of my own accord and that no one had instructed me to do anything. What’s more, I said that I’d been formally retained as a lawyer in those cases and that this fell within the scope of ordinary professional work. I’ve since seen my case file, and that statement isn’t in it.

LAWYERS: What happened after you gave your statement?

XIE: After I gave my statement, they said they were relatively satisfied with my attitude and they needed to report to their superiors. They also said that I should be able to receive lenient treatment. Then they left.

About 10 minutes or so later, sometime after 10:30, another police officer came in. He introduced himself as Li Kewei (李克伟) and said he was the ranking officer in charge of my case. I asked him how high a rank, and he drew a circle with his hand and said: “I’m in charge of this entire building.” I guessed he might be the chief or deputy chief of the Changsha Public Security Bureau. I later found out that Li Kewei was the head of the Domestic Security Unit at the Changsha Public Security Bureau.

LAWYERS: What happened then?

XIE: He told me he was not dissatisfied with my attitude. He said I’d only touched very lightly on my own actions and hadn’t “reflected” on things “deep enough in my heart.” He said: “You have to give a new statement, otherwise you won’t get any lenient treatment from us.”

I told him that I was disappointed in the way they were going back on their word. I asked what sort of “reflection” would qualify as “deep enough in my heart”—what was his standard?

He said: “We’re in charge of setting the standard.” I said that if they were in charge of the standard, then there was no way for me to assess it. I told him I was extremely disappointed by their lack of sincerity and that I was unwilling to cooperate with them.

LAWYERS: What happened next?

XIE: Another officer brought in my mobile phone and demanded that I enter the PIN so that they could access my phone. I told them they had no right to do that and I refused. I later found out that this officer was from the Huaihua Domestic Security Unit. He’s someone in charge of my case, but I don’t know his name.

LAWYERS: Then what happened?

XIE: Li Kewei said they weren’t after me and that he hoped I would change my attitude and cooperate with them. Then it was lunchtime. After lunch, there was no more discussion until 5 or 6 p.m. The police had an auxiliary officer stay with me. He didn’t let me sleep at night and kept me shackled like that up until daybreak. For the whole night, the auxiliary officer kept a close eye on me and didn’t let me sleep. As soon as I closed my eyes or nodded off, they would push me, slap me, or reprimand me. I was forced to keep my eyes open until dawn.

LAWYERS: What happened at dawn?

XIE: It must have been after five in the morning when five or six men burst in. Some were in plain clothes and some in uniform. They brought a faxed copy of a Decision on Residential Surveillance and had me sign it. After I signed, they brought me to a police car and took me away.

They drove me all the way to Changsha to a building that housed retired cadres from the National University of Defense Technology (国防科技大学). It was at 732 Deya Road in Kaifu District (开福区德雅路732号) — I saw this in my case file. I had no idea what sort of place it was when they brought me in. I only knew it was in Changsha, but I didn’t know where exactly.

In the car there was a police officer named Li Feng (李峰). I later learned he was from the Domestic Security Unit of the Hunan Provincial Public Security Bureau. He told me I’d already squandered one opportunity and said he hoped I would seize the next one and actively cooperate with them during my period of residential surveillance in a designated location. He said if I did, he’d report up to his superiors and seek lenient treatment for me. I thought that everything I’d done had been above board and I didn’t need to hide anything. I told them the PIN on my mobile phone and he was looking through my WeChat messages the whole ride over. He became very familiar with all that I’d done.

LAWYERS: What then?

XIE: It was about noon on July 12, 2015, when we got to the place in Changsha where they held me. They took me to that hotel and we entered through a side door. There were two police officers on either side of me, each grabbing hold of my arms and pressing on my neck to push me forward. They took me to a room on the second floor, which I later learned was Room 207. It was a relatively small room, with a small bed, two tables, and two chairs. There was a camera in the upper left corner as you entered the room.

LAWYERS: What happened after you went in?

XIE: After they brought me in, they had me sit on the chair. Three people stayed with me. None of them were police. I found out later that they were “chaperones” (陪护人员).

(The interview concluded at 4:54:45 p.m. on January 4, 2017.)

陈建刚律师: 【2017年01月05日09:23:32】今天刘律师回去了,我们继续开始笔录。(以下律师为陈建刚)
谢:好。
律师: 你被押到这个207房间的时候,从11日一个白天一个晚上,到现在半个白天,至少已经30个小时以上没有休息了,你有没有要求要休息一下?当时困不困啊?
谢:很困倦啊,但他们不断有人来,我连闭眼睛都不可能。
律师: 你说一下到了房间后的事情?
谢:到了房间之后,不断地有警察来问问题,也不做笔录,任何一个人都没有出示证件,没有穿制服,也没有告诉我他们的身份。他们有时候两人,有时候三人,也有超过三个人的时候,不停地来问我问题,有的问半个小时左右,有的问一个小时以上,没有任何笔录,反证就是不让我睡觉。他们走了之后我身边始终有人,讯问的走了后,陪护人员会在。第一天基本没有陪护在我身边的事件,不断地有便衣来问,始终处于讯问中。
律师: 都问了什么问题?
谢:家庭背景、社会关系,问我有多少个女人,我一年能挣多少钱,还问请庆安事件等等,他们都不做笔录。我后来知道负责对我审讯和调查的前前后后有40多人。
律师: 7月12日的这样讯问到什么时间?
谢:一直到晚上7点。7点以后说是领导来见我,就是长沙市国保支队第六大队大队长王铁铊来见我,所谓的领导就是他。他来了以后对我说让我认罪伏法,坦白自己的罪行,还说:“这个地方是个指定监视居住的地方,我们会保证你合理的休息时间,但是什么叫做合理法律没有规定,这个由我们来把握,我们认为你一天有两个小时休息就可以了,那么你就休息两个小事,我们认为1个小时可以就是1小时,我们认为半小时就是半小时,我们认为5分钟可以那就是5分钟。”
律师: 还说了什么?
谢:我对他们说你们作为警察怎么这样解读法律?王铁铊说“你现在是被指定监视居住期间,你现在唯一的权利就是服从,你要明白你自己的身份,你是犯罪嫌疑人。”
律师: 然后呢?
谢:王铁铊还说了很多恐吓的言语,大意就是如果我不顺从他们就会对我不利。总之是对我进行威胁的话。有王铁铊和其他几个人,一直这样对我说了好几个小时,一直到7月12日晚上12点。这个时候我已经40多个小时没有休息了,非常困倦。他们让我休息了。
律师: 休息了多久?
谢:到13号早晨6:30就被叫醒。
律师: 13号是怎么度过的?
谢:我说一下,从13日到19日,这7天当中凡是我接触到的人分了两类,一类是审讯人员,一类是陪护人员。审讯人员在24小时之中分了5个班来审讯我。陪护人员分三个班,每个班8小时,每次2人同时陪护。但是审讯的时候陪护人员都出去,他们不在跟前。
律师: 你仔细说一说审讯人员分班的情况?
谢:第一班:早晨8:00——13:00;第二班:13:00——18:00;第三班:18:00——23:00;第四班:23:00——凌晨3:00;第五班:3:00——8:00。前面四个班都不间断地审讯,第五班就不审讯了,他们说是给我休息的时间,从凌晨3:30到早晨6:30是我休息的事件,但是这只是说说而已,我得不到完整3个半小时的休息,因为第四班他们每次都是故意往后拖延,一直拖到凌晨4点以后,能让我休息一会,但6:30肯定会被叫醒,我每天只能休息2个小时多一点。
律师: 你记得对你审讯的人员的姓名吗?
谢:有周浪、屈可、尹卓、李阳、周毅、庄晓亮等,总共有十几个人,我记得的是这几个,其余的都不认识,他们也没有给我出示证件,没有告知他们的身份,也不穿警服。从2015年7月13日至19日就是这些人员对我审讯,五个班,前四个班每次至少3个人以上来审讯,至少有13人以上,多数我不知道名字,所制作的笔录也没有附卷。
律师: 你详细说一下他们是如何对你进行审讯的?
谢:我先说从13日到19日这7天的大致经过。我看了案卷,在19日之前的笔录有很多,但是他们都没有附卷。因为我是被他们指定监视居住,其实我就是被他们秘密关押,且我家属不知我在哪里,也没有任何律师能来见我,关押的房间一切都是他们掌控,我完全被他们控制。对我想怎样整就怎样整。
审讯的时候让我坐在塑料凳子上,塑料凳子是那种好几个可以一直叠加,一个套一个一直往上套的那种,没有靠背,他们弄了大约四五个套在一起,比较高,我坐在上面脚够不着地,双腿就是这样吊着。他们要求我挺直腰板坐着,双手放到膝盖上,抬头挺胸,一动都不能动。
律师: 你不可以稍稍活动一下,比如扭一下脸,弯一下腰吗?
谢:不能。那个周毅对我说,“如果你一动,我们就可以认为你是袭警,我们可以采取任何方式来进行处理。我们对于袭警,出手不会客气。”这样说来恐吓我,表示我一活动,就会对我采取暴力,哪怕是转一下脸,抬一下头都会被扣上袭警的罪名。如果喝水、上厕所需要打报告。
律师: 打报告是如何打?
谢:就是我要自己说“报告,我需要喝水。”或者“报告,我需要上厕所。”我喝水需要他们允许了才可以,否则不能喝水。他们曾长时间不给我水喝。
律师: 往后说?
谢:他们让我坐好了,就问我问题。每次都有三四个人,前面一个审讯,右前方一个,我后面一个专门盯着我,如果我累了弯一下腰或者转一下脸,后面的人就立即动手拍我,呵斥我,“坐好,挺直……”
律师: 然后呢?
谢:他们问我问题,我回答,他们总是不满意,然后就训斥我,让我反思,让我老实一点。还说“我们都是有材料的,我们已经掌握了你所有的东西,你不要错过了我们的好意……”,我回答的问题他们多数不满意,然后就是这样反反复复训斥我,恐吓我,甚至辱骂我。
律师: 他们有没有如实地把你的问题记录下来?
谢:当时他们在记录,但我不能确定他们是不是如实记录,现在看检察院的案卷,最初7天对我审讯的笔录是没有附卷的。
律师: 你说他们威胁你,辱骂你,他们是如何说的?
谢:这种威胁、辱骂、训斥是充满每一天的审讯的,太多了。尹卓每天都是晚上23:00——凌晨3:00这个班来审讯我,3点以后应该让我休息,如果我能立即休息的话,我在24小时中可以休息3个半小时,但是尹卓每次都故意要把时间拖延到凌晨4点钟以后。他曾对我说:“我白天休息的很好,每到晚上这个时候我就很兴奋,我就是要故意折磨你,你看着,我要把你折磨成一个疯子,你别以为你以后出去还可以做律师,你以后就是一个废人……”我当时很恐惧,不知道以后会发生什么。
律师: 说说你身体状况,你这样被折磨了多久?
谢:从13日到19号每天都是这样,每天被折磨,不能休息。有一天晚上,尹卓对我说:“谢阳,你来了这么长时间,你听到外面有一点声音吗?我们这个墙都是经过特殊处理的,任何一点声音都传不到外面去。在这里面不是你想说什么就说什么,应该是我们让你说什么你就说什么。你别以为出去以后可以告状,我告诉你,你告状也没有用,你这个案子是北京的案子,我们代表的是党中央来来处理你这个案子。我们即使把你弄死了,你也找不到任何证据证明是我们弄死你的。”我当时比较恐惧(谢阳开始哭泣),我的家人和律师都不知道我在哪里,我被他们整死了家人也不知道(谢阳哭泣)。我这是一生以来第二次遭遇到死亡的威胁,第一次是在东师古村,第二次就是这一次。和当时是一样的,人突然失踪了,任何人不知道我被绑架到哪里去。
律师:总是这样不让你休息,你最后疲惫到什么程度?屈服了吗?
谢:那种生不如死的状态没有办法形容。我第三天就崩溃了,精神完全崩溃,晚上审讯我的尹卓等人,他们就是故意来折磨我,我已经心神恍惚,我被折磨的哭了。我求他们让我休息几分钟就可以,但他们不同意,仍然持续折磨我。他们让我自己写自我供述,我说我实在写不动了,笔都拿不动了,脑袋靠在桌上,他们在后面抓我领子把我拉起来,不让我休息。尹卓、庄晓亮还有另外两个人把我拉起来,说“你既然不写,你今天就不能休息了。”这大概是16号的凌晨,我就是这样被逼坐着,没让我休息,整整24小时,连2个小时休息的时间都没了,第二天天亮了继续审讯。
律师: 你当时做的笔录还有好多你自己的自述材料,是你真实意识表示吗?
谢:当然不是。我必须按照他们要求写自述材料,如果不写就是永无休止的折磨我。而我写的不一定能达到他们的满意,尹卓给我订了三个方向,“你所有的行为只能从三个方向选择,要么是为了名,要么是为了利,要么是为了反党反社会主义。”我看了现在的案卷,很多我写过的东西还有他们做过的笔录都没有附卷,他们说那是因为不符合这三个方向,所以那些材料不合格。我当时做了笔录,我说我是合法办案,他们认为我这样说是不符合他们指出的三条路,逼我自己写,我真实的情况是合法办案,是看到不公不义我愿意去办这种案件,但这些事实不让我写,不可能出现在我自书材料中。
他们定的三条路,我只好自污,我是为名为利,反对共产党的现行体制这种话也是有的。写还是不写,名字签不签我没有权利选择,只能写,只能签字,写什么内容,笔录是什么内容,我没得选择,只能按照他们给的三条路——为名为利为反党反社会主义——当中选择。
律师: 这样,你对于你在本案中的笔录,还有你自己的自书材料,你是如何定性?这些材料属实吗?
谢:不属实。我是在被折磨、生不如死的状态下,按照尹卓、周毅、屈可等人的要求签字书写的。如果开庭,我要当庭对本案事实进行阐述,这些笔录是刑讯的结果。
律师: 【2017年01月05日11:24:22】上午就先到这里吧。下午我们继续。

(The interview started at 9:23:32 a.m. on January 5, 2017)

Chen Jiangang (陈建刚, “CHEN”): Today Lawyer Liu Zhengqing (刘正清) had to go back. Let’s continue our interview.

XIE: Okay.

CHEN: At the time you were put in Room 207, you hadn’t slept for all of the 11th and half a day on the 12th—that’s at least 30 hours. Did you ask for time to sleep? Were you tired?

XIE: Very tired! But they always had someone coming in, so I couldn’t even shut my eyes.

CHEN: Describe what happened after you got to the room.

XIE: After I got to the room, police kept coming in one after another to ask me questions. No one showed any identification, wore a uniform, or told me who they were. Sometimes there were two of them, sometimes three, and sometimes more than that. They never stopped coming to ask questions. Sometimes it lasted around a half-hour, sometimes more than an hour. They made no records of the interrogations. In any case, they didn’t let me sleep. When they left, there was always someone by my side. When the interrogators left, the “chaperones” (陪护人员) would be there. On the first day, the chaperones basically weren’t around, though. Plainclothes police kept coming in to question me—I was constantly being interrogated.

CHEN: What questions did they ask you?

XIE: They asked about my family background, my social ties, how many women I had, how much money I made a year. They also asked about the Qing’an case (庆安案). Things like that. They never took notes or wrote up a statement. I found out later that more than 40 people were responsible for interrogating and investigating me, start to finish.

CHEN: What time did that kind of questioning end on July 12?

XIE: It continued until 7 p.m. Then they said an official was coming to see me. It was Wang Tietuo (王铁铊), head of the Sixth Division of the Changsha Domestic Security Unit—he was the so-called “official.” He came to tell me to confess and admit my crimes. He also said: “This is a designated place for residential surveillance. We will ensure reasonable time for you to rest. But the law doesn’t specify what ‘reasonable’ means—this is up to us. If we think two hours of sleep a day is enough, then you get two hours to sleep. If we think one hour is enough, you get one hour. If we think half an hour is enough, you get half an hour. If we think five minutes is enough, then you get five minutes.”

CHEN: What else did he say?

XIE: I asked them how they, as police, could interpret the law like that? Wang Tietuo said: “You’re now under residential surveillance in a designated location. Your only right is to obey. You need to understand your own identity: you’re a criminal suspect.”

CHEN: What next?

XIE: Wang then said things to intimidate me, the gist of which was that it would be bad for me if I didn’t obey them. In sum, he was threatening me. Wang and several others spoke to me like that for several hours up until midnight. By that point, I’d been awake for over 40 hours and was incredibly tired. They let me sleep then.

CHEN: How long did you sleep?

XIE: Until 6:30 a.m. on the 13th, when they woke me.

CHEN: What took place on the 13th?

XIE: Let me explain. During the seven days from the 13th to the 19th, I had contact with two types of people: either interrogators or chaperones. The interrogators would come in five shifts every 24 hours to question me. The chaperones worked in pairs for three eight-hour shifts. But when the interrogators came in, the chaperones would leave—they weren’t present.

CHEN: Can you give more detail about the interrogators’ shifts?

XIE: The first shift lasted from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. The second went from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Shift three went from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. The fourth shift lasted from 11 p.m. to 3 a.m. And shift five went from 3 a.m. to 8 a.m.

The first four shifts involved endless interrogation, but they didn’t ask questions during the fifth shift. They said it was to give me time to sleep. I was supposed to sleep from 3 a.m. to 6:30 a.m., but that was just what they said. I didn’t get the full 3½ hours because the fourth shift would always deliberately drag things on until after 4 a.m. They’d let me sleep for a while, but I’d be woken up at 6:30 without question. I was only able to get a bit more than two hours of sleep a day.

CHEN: Do you remember the names of the people who interrogated you?

XIE: There was Zhou Lang (周浪), Qu Ke (屈可), Yin Zhuo (尹卓), Li Yang (李阳), Zhou Yi (周毅), and Zhuang Xiaoliang (庄晓亮). There were others, too—more than a dozen in all. Those are the ones I remember; I don’t know the others. They never showed me any identification or told me their names. They didn’t wear police uniforms. From July 13 until July 19, those were the people who interrogated me. Five shifts. At least three people would question me in the first four shifts, so at least 13 people. I don’t know most of their names, and the transcripts they made aren’t in the case file.

CHEN: Can you describe in detail how they interrogated you?

XIE: First let me tell you what happened overall on the seven days from the 13th to the 19th. I’ve seen the case file—there are a lot of interrogation transcripts from before the 19th, but they didn’t put any of them in the case file. Because I was under residential surveillance in a designated place, I was actually being secretly detained by them. My family didn’t know where I was and no lawyers could come see me. They controlled everything in the room, including me. I was completely under their control—they could treat me anyway they pleased.

During the interrogations, they’d have me sit on a plastic stool, the kind without any back that you can stack up, one on top of another. They stacked four or five of them, so that it was kind of tall. My feet couldn’t touch the ground when I sat on it, and my legs hung down like this. They demanded that I sit up straight and rigid, both hands on my knees, head up and chest out. I wasn’t allowed to move.

CHEN: You weren’t allowed to move even a bit—to stretch your back or turn your head?

XIE: No. Zhou Yi told me: “If you move at all, we can consider you to be attacking us and we can use whatever means we need to subdue you. We’re not gentle with people who attack police officers.” That’s how they threatened me with violence if I moved at all—they’d call it an attack on the police if my face twitched or I lowered my head. I had to ask for permission to drink water or use the toilet.

CHEN: How did you have to request permission?

XIE: I’d have to say: “Request permission to drink water” or “Request permission to use the toilet.” I needed their okay to take a drink of water, otherwise I’d get no water. They’d make me go long periods without letting me have any water.

CHEN: Please continue.

XIE: They made me sit there and asked me questions. Each time there would be three or four of them—one right in front, asking the questions; another facing me, to the right; and one behind me, keeping a close eye on me. If I got tired and tried to stretch or move my head, the guy behind me would immediately hit me and berate me, telling me to “sit up straight.”

CHEN: What else?

XIE: They asked me questions, and I answered. They were never satisfied and so they’d yell at me and tell me to “reflect” and “be straight” with them. They said: “We have documents and already know everything about you. Don’t pass up the chance we’re giving you here . . . .” They weren’t happy with the majority of my answers to their questions, so it went on like that with them reprimanding and intimidating me, sometimes even insulting me.

CHEN: Did they record your answers accurately?

XIE: They were taking notes at the time, but I can’t say whether they kept an accurate record. Looking now at the procuratorate’s case file, I don’t see any of the transcripts from my first seven days of interrogation.

CHEN: You said they threatened and insulted you. What did they say?

XIE: Each day’s interrogation was full of these kinds of threats, insults, and reprimands. It was too much! Yin Zhuo was the one who came to interrogate me from 11 p.m. to 3 a.m. every day. After 3 o’clock he was supposed to let me sleep. Assuming that I fell asleep right away, that meant I’d be able to sleep 3½ hours every 24 hours. But each time Yin Zhuo would deliberately drag things on until after 4 a.m. He once said to me: “I sleep very well during the day. Then I get so excited every night at this time because I get to torment you. You see, I’m going to torment you until you go insane. Don’t even imagine that you’ll be able to walk out of here and continue being a lawyer. You’re going to be a cripple . . . .” I was terrified at the time, not knowing what might happen to me.

CHEN: Talk about your physical condition. How long were you tormented like that?

XIE: It was like that every day from the 13th to the 19th, they tortured me and wouldn’t let me sleep. Every night, Yin Zhuo would say to me: “Xie Yang, you’ve been here so long now, have you ever heard a sound outside? These walls have been specially constructed so that no sound can travel outside. This is not a place where you can say whatever you want. It’s a place where you say what we want you to say. Don’t think you’ll get out of here and be able to file a complaint. Let me tell you, filing a complaint will do you no good. This case comes from Beijing. We’re handling your case on behalf of Party Central. Even if we were to kill you, they wouldn’t find a single piece of evidence to prove it was us who did it.”

I was quite terrified then [starts to sob]. My family and lawyers had no idea where I was. If they tortured me to death, my family wouldn’t even know [sobs]. This was the second time in my life that I’d been threatened with death. The first time was in Dongshigu Village [hometown of Chen Guangcheng], and this was the second time. It was the same thing all over again: suddenly I disappear and no one knows where I’ve been kidnapped to.

CHEN: How tired were you after deprived you of sleep like that? Did you eventually give in?

XIE: There’s no way to describe that state of not wanting to go on living. On the third day, I broke down. A complete mental breakdown. Yin Zhuo and the others came to interrogate me that night, and they were deliberately trying to torment me. I was already mentally disturbed and began to cry. I begged them to let me sleep for just a few minutes, but they refused and continued to torment me. They wanted me to write my statement, but I told them I really couldn’t do it—I couldn’t even pick up the pen. I tried to rest my head on the table, but they grabbed my collar and pulled me up. Yin Zhuo, Zhuang Xiaoliang and two others pulled me up and said: “If you’re not going to write, then tonight you don’t get to sleep!” That must have been the early morning of the 16th. So, like that, I was forced to sit there for a full 24 hours without sleep, not even the two hours of sleep. At daybreak the next day, they continued their interrogation.

CHEN: All of the statements and transcripts from that time, did these accurately reflect your own views?

XIE: Of course not! I had to write my confession according to their demands. If I didn’t, they would torment me to no end. But I couldn’t always write to their satisfaction.

Yin Zhuo gave me three choices for how I should explain my actions as a rights lawyer: “Either you did it for fame, for profit, or to oppose the Party and socialism.” Looking at the case file now, many of the things I wrote or the interview transcripts they kept were not included. They said those documents were no good because they didn’t fit with those three explanations. In one interview I said that I handled cases in a legal way, but they thought that this didn’t fit with the three options they’d given me and forced me to write something myself.

The truth is that I handled cases in a legal way, and that I took on cases when I saw injustice being done. But they wouldn’t let me write down this sort of truth, so it won’t show up in any of my written statements.

Since they’d set out three options, I could only smear myself. I did it for fame and profit, to oppose the Communist Party and the current political system—those words are in there. I had no right to choose whether to write them or not or sign my name to them. All I could do was write, sign. Whatever was written or whatever is in the transcripts, I had no choice. I could only choose from the three options they gave me—fame, profit, or opposing the Party and socialism.

CHEN: So, what’s your evaluation of the interrogation records and your written statements in this case? Are they truthful?

Xie: They’re not truthful. I wrote and signed them according to the demands of Yin Zhuo, Zhou Yi, Qu Ke and the others, under torture and in a state of wanting to die.

CHEN: Let’s stop here this morning and continue in the afternoon.

(The interview concluded at 11:24:22 a.m. on January 5, 2017)

律师:【2017年01月05日14:49:55】我们继续。
谢:好。
律师: 除了不让你睡觉外,还有其他方式逼迫你吗?
谢:有。他们有一种慢性的整人方式,叫做“吊吊椅”,就是我说的好几张塑料凳子叠加起来,强迫我坐在上面,每天24小时中除了让我休息的2个小时外,其余时间我一直被强迫在上面坐着,双腿不能着地。我的右腿之前受过伤,我告诉过他们,这样整我会把我整残废的,我对所有来审讯我的警察都说了,他们每个人都是说“我们知道了,你说的不是个事,我们会把握的。”还有的说“你别给我讲条件,让你怎样就怎样!”
律师: 然后呢?
谢:没人同情我的遭遇,他们就是故意整我折磨我啊。我每天这样20个小时以上地坐着,两条腿吊着,两条腿都痛,然后都麻木了,再后来,我右腿从上到下都肿起来。那时候是夏天,大腿小腿都肿的很厉害。
律师: 你的腿出现症状以后,他们有没有停止对你的审讯然后为你治疗?
谢:不可能停止审讯,仍然是一天20小时以上的审讯。就是给了我一小瓶喷雾的云南白药和红花油,都是外用的药。
律师: 你有没有因为右腿浮肿的症状要求休息?
谢:有啊,但是没有用,那些审讯我的警察尹卓、周毅、屈可等人都是故意折磨我的,甚至明确地这样告诉我。每天20个小时坐“吊吊椅”的这种方式本身就是慢性整人的方式,会让人腰肌劳损,会让双腿吊的疼痛,但都是慢性的,是没有外伤的。再加上不让睡觉,这种折磨都是看不到外伤,不会落下痕迹的折磨人的方式。
律师: 在这种不让睡觉、“吊吊椅”的方式下,你的笔录和自述与事实相符吗?
谢:没有办法相符啊。我自己写的他们不满意就让我重写,他们做的笔录凡是他们认为我的回答不满意的,他们就反反复复重新问我,他们明确地告诉我,“我们有的是时间,你这样被指定监视居住的时间是6个月,你如果不老实听话,我们就继续往下整。”他们要的答案就是三条路,为名为利为反党反社会主义,我只能从中选择。为了早点结束,他们让怎样写我就怎样写,后来我整个人崩溃了,甚至他们提审我让我自己写材料,我都哭了,实在写不动,我说他们打印好的,无论什么内容我都签字,生不如死,实在受不了,我就是想休息一会。
律师: 有人殴打过你吗?
谢:有。周浪、尹卓、庄晓亮还有其他人,殴打我很多次。
律师: 什么时间、因为什么事情殴打你?
谢:他们说我不配合他们写自书材料。他们逼着我按他们的意思写自书材料,完全不符合事实的事情非要逼着我写,我拒绝了。还有的时候我实在是疲惫,笔都拿不动,多数是在第四班也就是晚上11点到凌晨3点期间,我实在写不动,他们就过来殴打我。
律师: 怎样殴打的?
谢:他们几个人过来拉我起来,他们有分工,有人抓着我胳膊,有人用拳头猛击我腹部,用膝盖顶我腹部,还用脚猛踹我。
律师: 你房间有摄像头吗?
谢:有摄像头,且应该是正常运转的。他们每次殴打我都是把我拉到摄像头正下方,摄像头镜头照不到的地方殴打,这个地方是摄像头的盲点。我知道他们的想法,所以每次他们打我我就故意往摄像头能照到的地方走。后来尹卓对我说:“你以为这个摄像头能帮你啊,告诉你,这个摄像头是我们控制的,你别以为到这个摄像头下就有用。你这个案子你是反革命罪,你以为共产党能放过你?我整死你没有任何人能帮你……”
律师: 当时有没有把你打出问题来?
谢:外伤和硬伤是没有的,他们能打痛就可以。最主要是朝腹部以下下半身动手,不会留下硬伤和外伤。
律师: 你当时在他们殴打之后有没有屈服?
谢:有。我想尽快结束他们对我的审讯,哪怕是死了。后来让我怎样写我就怎样写。笔录也签字好多,他们自己打印的笔录,不让我提任何意见,更不能修改。我开始的时候要求修改,因为笔录完全是假的,他们不同意,说我不老实,就殴打我。后来笔录我只能签字,他们爱怎样打印就怎样打印,我没有任何提出异议或者修改的权利。
律师: 还有其他方式折磨你或让你难受的方式吗?
谢:有。在13日至19日之间,他们还用烟熏的方式整我。
律师: 你说一下什么叫做烟熏?
谢:审讯我的警察有几个人,他们主要不是负责审讯,但轮班能轮到他们。有几个人坐在我左右两边,每个人一次点燃好几只香烟,放到一块,两个人抽了之后都喷烟道我面前来,我被迫坐着,这样在我脑袋周围能呼吸的范围内全是烟。我说“你们这样做不大合适吧?”他们说:“我们抽烟你管得着吗?我们就愿意这样做。”所以他们就一直这样用烟来熏我。他们也不是为了向我逼口供,但就是为了折磨我,为了让我痛苦。在前7天过去后他们认为我已经被折磨了,所以在后面让我签笔录的时候,一旦我不配合或者提出异议要求修改的时候,他们就说“谢阳,你需不需要回炉重新搞一下?”威胁重新对我进行刑讯。还说“谢阳,我们整死你像整死一直蚂蚁一样。”
律师: 他们还对你说过什么?
谢:他们自始至终拿我家人和孩子对我威胁,对我说“你老婆在湖大(湖南大学)当教授,她经济上难道就没有一点问题?你如果不配合,不要逼我们把这个事情扩大化。如果你不讲清楚讲明白,毫无疑问,要整你老婆。还有你哥哥,我们知道也是个国家公职人员,还是个小小的头目,难道他就没有一点问题?我们也知道你有一个有出息的侄子,在湖南信访局,难道他就那么干净?你不要逼我们去查他们。”还拿我孩子来威胁我,说“你女儿谢雅娟在长沙博才中学读书,如果她老师和同学都知道她的父亲是个反革命分子的话,她能抬起头来吗?她将来如果要做公务员这怎么可能呢?”
律师: 还说什么?
谢:尹卓等人还对我威胁过我老婆孩子的生命,原话是“你老婆孩子开车的时候要注意交通安全,现在这个社会交通事故比较多。”
律师: 你有没有问他这是什么意思?
谢:没有。我明白这是什么意思。我当时内心十分恐惧。他们拿我老婆孩子威胁我(谢阳开始哭泣),我说“你们要这样做我也没办法,你们要问的事情我都如实讲了,我被关着,你们如果还是要这样做,我也没办法。”
律师: 然后呢?还说过其他吗?
谢:他们还对我说过很多话,比如“你在外面有多少女人外面都已经掌握了,你不要让我们告诉你老婆,这会对你家庭有影响。”我说你们如果查到了就告诉我老婆吧。他们这是扯淡的话,以为我像他们一样。
律师:还有吗?
谢:他们还威胁过要查我周边的朋友,比如我朋友谢某某。尹卓说:“如果我们要扩大打击面很容易,我们有的是资源,如果你不配合我们,你周围的朋友我们都可以下手一个一个查一个一个整。我们有的是资源和手段,这个案子,我们没有任何限度地往下整,包括你在的律师事务所,你的同事朋友,我们想整谁,想怎样整就怎样整。”这种威胁的话贯穿整个审讯过程,尤其是前面7天。
律师: 然后呢?还说过什么?
谢:他们主要用我孩子来威胁我(谢阳开始哭泣)。尹卓对我说“我们抓了很多律师,张磊律师在浙江已经被抓了。”我听了我就哭了,哭了很久。我被抓的时候张磊律师家刚生了小孩一个多月,我听到说张磊被抓我心里很难过,担心他家孩子也担心我家孩子,我哭了很久。
律师:然后呢?
谢:庄晓亮、尹卓等人对我说过:“我们主要看你的态度,你的案子是天字第一号的案子,如果我们做错了你到北京去告我们,你以为我们这样整你北京不知道吗?我们想怎样整就怎样整。”
律师: 你在被指定监视居住期间能保证你的正常饮食吗?
谢:不能,他们故意不给我水喝。中午11:30会有人送饭过来,但是他们每次都不会让我吃饭,而都是要故意拖延到下午1点多才给我吃饭。这时候饭都冷凉了。审讯的时候他们不给我水喝,因为我喝水需要打报告,但是他们不让喝。还故意把水放在我面前,就是不给我喝,就是这样故意刁难我,水就在我面前,但是他们就掌握我对饮水这种最基本的需求,让我难受。有一次我是在渴的难受我拿了放在面前的矿泉水瓶喝水,周毅抢过去就开始殴打我,说我袭警。
律师: 在指定监视居住期间,除了殴打、威胁、“吊吊椅”、不让睡觉、不给水喝、烟熏眼睛这种方式之外,还有其他方式向你逼供吗?
谢:他们还引诱过我,让我故意牵扯、诬陷别人,说是让我检举、揭发。
律师: 你说说经过。
谢:大概是在15年8月中旬,这个时候对我密集的第一轮审讯已经完了,因为我受不了酷刑,他们要的笔录我都签字,这已经做完了。尹卓他们就想让我牵扯、诬陷别人。尹卓对我说:“谢阳,你做律师才3年,你每天做坏事也做不了多少,你只要把“人权律师团”中其他人给牵扯出来,你就能立功,就能争取宽大处理。如果你能把刘卫国啊、刘金湘啊、陈建刚啊、张磊啊、覃永沛啊、朱孝顶啊、庞琨啊、常伯阳啊、葛文秀啊、隋牧青啊,还有湖南的文东海、蔡瑛、杨金柱啊、胡林政啊,你要是能把这些人牵扯出来你就能立功,我们就会向上级汇报,争取给你取保,让你出去。”
律师:你是怎样回答的?
谢:我说人权律师团不是一个组织,只是一个聊天群,没有任何组织。并且我是一个独来独往的人,我不接受任何人的指令。我和其他律师联系不多,你们说的这些律师我和他们交往不多,我没有什么可以提供的。我拒绝构陷其他律师。
律师: 除了让你牵扯这些律师以外,还有其他人吗?
谢:有。尹卓还点了好多公民的名字,比如长沙的欧彪锋、北京的翟岩民,还有很多人名我都不认识。尹卓等人要求我把他们牵扯出来,让我诬陷他们。他们还拿了很多欧彪锋的材料给我看,让我牵连、揭发他。提示我,让我说和他们有什么沟通,办什么什么事情之类的。我拒绝了。
律师: 你拒绝了尹卓之后,他怎么说?
谢:他很失望。过了一个周以后,他又找我,说“其他人你不讲也就罢了,我们请示了长沙公安局国保的主要负责人,湖南律师中蔡瑛和杨金柱,你如果能把他们的事情进行检举揭发,哪怕是一个人也可以,就会对你宽大处理,我们可以对你取保候审。”
律师: 你是如何回答的?
谢:我说我想立功,但是我和杨金柱交往不多,甚至在长沙都没有见过面,我想立功想检举揭发,但是我对他不了解,我没有材料可以检举揭发。对于蔡瑛律师,我虽然了解这个人,但是我们工作没有交集,我想立功想揭发检举,但我没有材料。我们在一起就是吃吃饭喝点酒而已,其他的没有交往。
律师: 这是你第二次拒绝尹卓,尹卓如何说?
谢:尹卓说这是给我的机会,我不珍惜,给我机会我不要,这是我自找挨整。
律师: 今天就到这里吧,明天我们继续。
谢:好的。【2017年01月05日16:56:06】

[The interview began at 2:49:55 p.m. on January 5, 2017.]

Chen Jiangang (陈建刚, “CHEN”): Let’s continue.

Xie Yang (谢阳, “XIE”): Okay.

CHEN: Other than not letting you sleep, were there other ways they used to coerce you?

XIE: Yes. They have a kind of slow torture called the “dangling chair.” It’s like I said before—they made me sit on a bunch of plastic stools stacked on top each other, 24 hours a day except for the two hours they let me sleep. They make you sit up there, with both feet unable to touch the ground. I told them that my right leg was injured from before, and that this kind of torture would leave me crippled. I told all of the police who came to interrogate me. They all said: “We know. Don’t worry, we have it under control.” Some also said: “Don’t give us conditions—you’ll do what we tell you to do!”

CHEN: What next?

XIE: No one had any sympathy for my situation. They just deliberately tortured and tormented me. Every day, I had to sit there for more than 20 hours, both legs dangling in such pain until they became numb. Afterwards, my right leg began to swell from top to bottom. It was summer, and my thigh and calf were both severely swollen.

CHEN: After your leg began showing symptoms, did they stop interrogating you and provide you with any medical treatment?

XIE: No. That went on for more than 20 hours a day. They just gave me some Chinese medicine to rub on my legs.

CHEN: Did you ask for time to rest because your right leg was swollen?

XIE: Sure, but it was no use. Yin Zhuo (尹卓), Zhou Yi (周毅), Qu Ke (屈可) and the other police who interrogated me were deliberately trying to torment me—they even said so clearly. Making someone sit on a “dangling chair” for 20 hours a day is a kind of slow torture. It causes lumbar pain and pain in the legs, but it’s slow and doesn’t leave any external injuries. When you add sleep deprivation to that, this is a way to torture people that doesn’t cause external injuries and doesn’t leave any scars.

CHEN: Considering the sleep deprivation and the “dangling chair,” were the transcripts of your interrogations and the statements you signed factual?

XIE: There was no way to match the facts. They weren’t happy with what I wrote and made me rewrite it. Every time they didn’t like my answer to one of their questions, they would keep asking me again and again. They clearly told me: “We’ve got all the time in the world. You’re in residential surveillance for six months. If you don’t behave and obey, we’ll continue to torment you.”

They wanted answers to fit their three options—fame, profit, or opposing the Party and socialism. I could only choose from those options. To get it over with sooner, I wrote whatever they wanted me to write. Later, I completely broke down. It got to the point where I was crying as they questioned me and had me write statements. I really couldn’t write anymore. I told them to type something up and I’d sign it, no matter what it said. I didn’t want to go on living. I couldn’t take it anymore—I just wanted to sleep for a little while.

CHEN: Did anyone beat you?

XIE: Yes, I was beaten many times by Zhou Lang (周浪), Yin Zhuo, Zhuang Xiaoliang (庄晓亮) and some others.

CHEN: When and why did they beat you?

XIE: They said I wasn’t being cooperative in the way I was writing statements. They wanted me to write according to what they wanted, even if it didn’t match the facts at all. They tried to force me, and I refused. There were other times when I was simply too tired and I couldn’t even pick up the pen. Mostly it was during the fourth shift, from 11 p.m. to 3 a.m. When I couldn’t write, they would beat me.

CHEN: How would they beat you?

XIE: Several of them would come over and pull me up. Then they’d split up the work: one or two would grab my arms while someone used their fists to punch me in the stomach, kneed me in the stomach, or kicked me with their feet.

CHEN: Was there a camera in the room?

XIE: Yes, there was, and it should have been working normally. Every time they beat me they would drag me to a blind spot just below the camera where it couldn’t capture what they were doing. I knew what they were thinking, so each time they beat me I would deliberately move to a spot where the camera could see what was going on. Later, Yin Zhuo said to me: “You think the camera is going to help you? I tell you, we control the camera, so don’t think it’ll do any good for you to be in its view. This is a case of counterrevolution! Do you think the Communist Party will let you go? I could torture you to death and no one could help you . . . .”

CHEN: Did those beatings lead to any injuries?

XIE: There were no external injuries—they just wanted to cause pain. They’d mainly target the lower body, from the stomach down, so there’d be no visible injuries.

CHEN: Did you give in after being beaten by them?

XIE: Yes, I wanted to be done with the interrogations as quickly as possible, even if it meant dying. So whatever they wanted me to write, I wrote. I also signed a lot of interrogation transcripts that they typed up. They didn’t let me make any suggestions, let alone make changes. At first I demanded to make changes, because the transcripts were all lies. But they didn’t agree and said I was being dishonest. Later, I could only sign the transcripts. Whatever they wanted to type up, they would type up. I had no right to make any objections or changes.

CHEN: Were there other ways that they tortured you or caused you discomfort?

XIE: Yes. Between the 13th and the 19th, they also used smoke to torture me.

CHEN: Can you explain what that entailed?

XIE: There were several people among the police who interrogated me who weren’t the ones mainly responsible for the interrogation. But eventually their shifts would come up. A couple of them would sit on either side of me, and each would light some cigarettes and put them together. The two of them would puff on the cigarettes and then blow the smoke toward my face while I was forced to sit there. All of the breathing space around my head was smoke. I said: “It’s not too appropriate for you to do that, is it?” They said: “What can you do about it? We’ll smoke like this if we want!” So they kept on “smoking” me like that. It wasn’t to force me to confess; it was just to torment me and make me miserable.

After the first seven days, they figured I’d already been tormented. So later when they’d make me sign interrogation records, if I didn’t cooperate or raised objections or asked for changes, they’d say: “Xie Yang, do you need to be sent back to the furnace for a while?” They were threatening to torture me again. They also said: “Xie Yang, we’ll torture you to death just like an ant.”

CHEN: What else did they say to you?

XIE: From start to finish, they used my family and child to threaten me. They said: “Your wife is a professor at Hunan University–surely she must have ‘economic problems’? [e. g. corruption] If you don’t cooperate, we might be forced to expand this matter. If you don’t come clean and explain things clearly, we’ll go after your wife without a doubt.”

They said: “And we know your brother’s a civil servant, a minor official. Surely he has some problems we could investigate? And we know you have a nephew who has bright prospects and works at the Hunan Bureau of Letters and Visits. Is he really that clean? Don’t force us to go and investigate them.”

They also threatened my children, saying: “Your daughter Xie Yajuan is a student at Bocai Middle School in Changsha. If her classmates and teachers knew that her father was a counterrevolutionary, could she even raise her head up? How could she ever get a job as a civil servant in the future?”

CHEN: What else did they say?

XIE: Yin Zhuo and the others also threatened the lives of my wife and children. The exact words were: “Your wife and children need to pay attention to traffic safety when they’re out in the car. There are a lot of traffic accidents these days.”

CHEN: Did you ask what he meant by that?

XIE: No, I knew what it meant. I was extremely scared then. They used my wife and children to threaten me [starts to sob]. I said: “If that’s what you want to do, there’s nothing I can do about it. I’ve answered all of your questions truthfully. I’m locked up here. If that’s what you want to do, there’s nothing I can do about it.”

CHEN: What then? Did they say anything else?

XIE: They said a lot. For example: “We know all about how many women you have out there. Don’t make us tell your wife—it would have an impact on your family.” I said, if you’ve found something go ahead and tell my wife. They thought I was just like them.

CHEN: What else?

XIE: They threatened to investigate my friends. Yin Zhuo said: “It would be easy for us to expand the scope of our investigation. We have plenty of resources. If you don’t cooperate with us, we can investigate your friends one by one and put them through the wringer. We’ve got the resources and we have our methods. In this case, there’s no limit to how far we can take the investigation—that includes your law firm, your friends and colleagues. We’ll go after whomever we please and deal with them however we want.” This type of threat permeated the entire interrogation process, especially during the first seven days.

CHEN: And then? What else did they say?

XIE: They mainly used my children to threaten me [starts to sob]. Yin Zhuo said: “We’ve arrested a bunch of lawyers. Lawyer Zhang Lei (张磊) has been arrested in Zhejiang.” I cried for a long time when I heard that. Zhang Lei had a newborn baby at the time I was arrested, just over a month old. I was very sad when I heard that Zhang Lei had been arrested and cried for a long time because I was worried both for his child and for mine.

CHEN: What next?

XIE: Zhuang Xiaoliang and Yin Zhuo said to me: “We’re mainly looking at your attitude. Your case is the number one case up above. You think you can go to Beijing and file complaints about mistakes we’ve made—don’t you think Beijing knows we’re putting you through all this? We’ll make you suffer any way we please!”

CHEN: Was your ordinary access to food and drink ensured while you were in residential surveillance in a designated location?

XIE: No, they deliberately didn’t let me drink water. At 11:30 a.m. someone would deliver food, but each time they wouldn’t let me eat and deliberately dragged on and didn’t let me eat until after 1 p.m. By that time, the food was already cold.

They didn’t let me drink water during their interrogations. If I wanted a drink, I needed to request permission but they wouldn’t let me drink. They’d deliberately put water in front of me, but they wouldn’t let me drink any—that sort of thing. They’d put the water in front of me, but they used control over one of my basic needs—the need to drink water—to make me miserable.

Once I was so thirsty that I started drinking from a bottle of water they’d put in front of me. Zhou Yi snatched it away and started beating me, saying that I’d tried to attack a police officer.

CHEN: During the period of residential surveillance in a designated location, other than beatings, threats, the “dangling chair,” sleep deprivation, and smoke in your eyes, were there other methods they used to coerce you?

XIE: They also tried to induce me to implicate and frame other people. They said they wanted me to inform and expose.

CHEN: Explain what happened.

XIE: It was probably the middle of August 2015. The first round of concentrated interrogations was over. Because I couldn’t take the torture anymore, I’d signed anything they wanted me to sign. That was over. Yin Zhuo and the rest now wanted me to implicate and frame other people. Yin Zhuo said to me: “Xie Yang, you’ve only been a lawyer for three years. Even if you did bad things every day during that time, it wouldn’t amount to much. If you implicate other members of the Human Rights Lawyers Group (人权律师团), you’d be performing meritorious service and could get lenient treatment. You could implicate Liu Weiguo (刘卫国), Liu Jinxiang (刘金湘), Chen Jiangang, Zhang Lei, Qin Yongpei (覃永沛), Zhu Xiaoding (朱孝顶), Pang Kun (庞琨), Chang Boyang, (常伯阳), Ge Wenxiu (葛文秀), Sui Muqing (隋牧青), Wen Donghai (文东海), Cai Ying (蔡瑛), Yang Jinzhu (杨金柱), or Hu Linzheng (胡林政). Inform on any one of them, and you’ll be performing meritorious service. We’ll report it up to our superiors and get you released on bail.”

CHEN: How did you answer?

XIE: I said there’s no organization called “Human Rights Lawyers Group”—it’s just a chat group, not an organization. I said I’m an independent person and don’t take orders from anyone. I don’t have a lot of contacts with other lawyers and haven’t had too many interactions with the lawyers you’ve named. I don’t have anything to offer you. I refused to frame other lawyers.

CHEN: Besides implicating other lawyers, did they want you to inform on anyone else?

XIE: Yes, Yin Zhuo also named a number of citizens, like Ou Biaofeng (欧彪峰) in Changsha and Zhai Yanmin (翟岩民) in Beijing. There were a bunch of other names that I didn’t recognize. Yin Zhuo and the others wanted me to inform on and frame them. They brought in a bunch of documents on Ou Biaofeng for me to look at in order to get me to implicate and expose him. They prompted me to try and get me to say what communications I’d had with them, what sorts of cases I’d handled with them, and that sort of thing. I refused.

CHEN: What did Yin Zhuo say after you refused?

XIE: He was very disappointed. After another week, he came to see me and said: “Forget about the others. We’ve asked the main responsible persons in the Changsha Domestic Security Unit. They said if you can report on and expose things that Hunan lawyers Cai Ying (蔡瑛) and Yang Jinzhu (杨金柱) did—even one of them is enough—they’ll give you lenient treatment and we can release you on bail.”

CHEN: How did you reply?

XIE: I said I wanted to perform meritorious service but that I hadn’t had much interaction with Yang Jinzhu and hadn’t ever seen him in Changsha. I said I wanted to report on and expose any wrongdoing, but I didn’t really know anything about him and didn’t have any materials to give them. As for Lawyer Cai Ying, I said even though I knew him we hadn’t worked together and I didn’t have any materials on him either. I said we’d only eaten a few meals together and had a few drinks—no interaction beyond that.

CHEN: That was the second time you refused Yin Zhuo. What did he say?

XIE: Yin Zhuo said he was giving me a chance and I was squandering it. He said I was asking for punishment by not accepting the opportunities he was offering me.

CHEN: Let’s stop here for today and continue again tomorrow.

(The interview concluded at 4:56:06 p.m. on January 5, 2017.)

律师: 【2017年01月06日09:47:50】现在我们继续聊。你拒绝尹卓以后,发生了什么事情?
谢:我有便秘的毛病,需要吃水果,不然便秘会比较严重。我在被关押期间连水都喝不上,所以便秘非常严重,我极端痛苦。我要求他们给我吃一点水果,他们一开始不给,后来让我交换。就是逼我写自书材料,按照他们要求写,就给我吃水果,笔录按他们要求签字就给我水果,我没有办法,又得不到休息,身体还疼痛,后来他们让写什么我就写什么,让我签字我就签字,我当时已经整个崩溃了。
律师: 继续说。
谢:到了10月24号,我不知什么原因全身发抖,冒冷汗,我非常恐惧,我说我要去医院检查。当时他们就报告了叶云(长沙国保六大队指导员),叶云来了,说不能让我去医院,如果有病可以安排人来给我看病。我不相信他们的医生。
我怕我会死在这里,我老婆孩子都不知道(落泪哭泣)。我从窗户向外喊:“我是谢阳律师,我被长沙国保关押在这里,没有通知我的家人。请通知我老婆,我生病了,我要治病。”当时外面有人在散步,我当时就喊,告诉外面的人我老婆的名字、工作单位和电话,请通知我的老婆。
在晚上9:46的时候,叶云用他的手机拨打了120电话。在等待120救护的时候,来了一个没穿制服的人,很魁梧,他力量很大,一只手顶住我胸口把我推在墙上,我一动都不能动,呼吸都不能,另一只手左右打我耳光,打了我很多下。我被顶着胸口非常非常痛,说不出话来,又被打脑袋,就半昏迷了。大概过了20多分钟,120救护车就来了,他们首先不让120医生对我就行检查,而是先把他们叫出去进行交代。然后一个姓王的小伙子对我进行了检查,就是简单的检查,没给我做任何救治,没有开药,说继续观察,然后就走了。
律师: 我注意到你是2015年7月12日被带走监视居住,但对你的审讯笔录却是从7月19日开始的,你如何解释?
谢:前7天也是有很多笔录的,但是他们都不标记是第几次,我要求他们写清楚他们说这不是我的事情,我不能提,那些笔录都没有附卷,因为那个时候我还没有被整服,所以那些笔录他们都没有拿出来。7月19日的笔录绝不是第一次。从7月11日凌晨6点我就没能睡觉,这样一直整了我3天就崩溃了,我自己写的那些也都是在这种逼迫状态下写的。
律师: 你对于案卷中你亲自签字过的笔录还有你自书的材料,你是如何评价?
谢:大致分两部分,其一基本事实的内容有一些不正确,因为我说了事实他们不同意,他们非要按照他们的想法制作笔录,所以事实方面不能保证全是事实。其二是有关我的反思,这些全部都不真实,这是我被逼迫状态写的,如果我不这写,如果我不签字,我当时就会死在那个宾馆,他们故意折磨我已经超出了我能承受的极限,我当时想自杀,他们的陪护人员为了防止我自杀从两个人增加到三个人,三个人分别在我身体一周,怕我自杀,要盯着我。前7天以后,白天审讯,晚上不审讯了,大概过了20天以后,他们怕我自杀,陪护人员从3个班增加到四个班,每个班从2个人增加到3个人,一分钟不离地盯着我,怕我撞墙自杀。在这种生不如死、求死不能的状态下,我如果不按照他们给的三个方向——为名为利为反党反社会主义当中选择写材料或者做笔录的话,我当时就会被折磨的死去活来,我没得选择。
律师: 笔录中有很多自污的说法,还有所谓的反党反社会主义、反对现行体制的笔录,你如何认为?
谢:这种话都不是我说的,我根本就不会说这种话。这种笔录的制作是审讯的警察自己打印的,我仅仅是被逼签字而已。好几卷的笔录,几乎没有一个修改的地方,这可能真实吗?我当时看了笔录我说我没有这样说,我要求如实记录要求修改,尹卓说“我们公安机关的笔录不允许你修改”,所以我只能签字。他们在前7天不让我睡觉,酷刑折磨我,我后来同意签字,所以在19日以后笔录就很多很多,这些笔录就是这样来的。
律师: 笔录我们就先做到这里。这几天的笔录,你所说的都是真实的吗?
谢:是真实的,这是我被监视居住期间真实的遭遇。
律师: 你仔细看看笔录,下午我把打印稿拿来你核对后签字。
谢:好的。
【谢阳和律师签字】
以上笔录我看过,和我说的相符。
谢阳
2017年01月6日
陈建刚【律师】

[The interview began at 9:47:50 a.m. on January 6, 2017]

Chen Jiangang (陈建刚, “CHEN”): Let’s continue our conversation. What happened after you refused the attempts by Yin Zhuo (尹卓) to get you to implicate others?

XIE: I tend to be constipated and need to eat fruit; otherwise the condition can get rather serious. I couldn’t even drink water while I was locked up, so my constipation got very serious and I was in extreme pain. I asked them to give me some fruit to eat. They didn’t give me any at first, but later they wanted me to trade. I would have to write a statement according to what they wanted, and in exchange they’d give me some fruit. Or they’d give me fruit if I signed the transcripts they wanted me to sign. I had no choice—I wasn’t allowed to sleep and I was in physical pain. Eventually, I wrote whatever they wanted me to write and signed whatever they wanted me to sign. By that time, I was completely broken.

CHEN: Please continue.

XIE: On October 24, I inexplicably began to shiver all over and broke out in a cold sweat. I was terrified and said I wanted to get myself checked out in a hospital. They reported the situation to Ye Yun (叶云, political instructor with the 6th Division of the Changsha Domestic Security Unit). Ye Yun came and said they couldn’t let me go to the hospital, but if I was sick they could arrange for someone to come and examine me. I didn’t trust their doctors.

I was afraid that I was going to die there and that my wife and child wouldn’t know [begins to sob]. I began to shout from the window: “This is Lawyer Xie Yang! I’m being held here by the Changsha Domestic Security Police! No one has notified my family! Please let my wife know that I’m ill and need medical treatment!” There were some people outside walking around. I shouted and told them my wife’s name, work unit, and telephone number and asked them to call my wife.

That evening at 9:46, Ye Yun used his mobile phone to dial the emergency rescue hotline. While we were waiting for an ambulance to arrive, a man came in wearing civilian clothes. He was big and strong, and with one hand against my chest he pushed me up against the wall so that I couldn’t move and could barely breathe. With his other hand he slapped me back and forth several times across the face. I was in great pain from the pressure on my chest. I couldn’t speak and the blows to my head left me semi-conscious.

About 20 minutes later, the ambulance arrived. At first they didn’t let the paramedics examine me; instead, they took them outside to give them instructions. Then a young guy by the name of Wang examined me very briefly. He didn’t give me any treatment or medication. He told them to continue observing me and then he left.

CHEN: I noticed that you were placed under residential surveillance on July 12, 2015, but that your interrogation records only start on July 19. How do you explain that?

XIE: There are a lot of records of interrogations from the first seven days, but they don’t note the sequence. I asked that they mark the transcripts clearly, but they said it was none of my business. None of those transcripts are in the case file, because I still hadn’t surrendered to their torture yet. So they haven’t brought out any of those records. The interrogation on July 19 was certainly not the first. From the early morning of July 11 I wasn’t allowed to sleep. After three days of that treatment, I broke down. The things I wrote were all written under that kind of coercion.

CHEN: What’s your assessment of the transcripts you personally signed and the documents you wrote, all of which are in your case file?

XIE: There are generally two types. The first type is made up of documents concerning basic facts, in which there are some inaccuracies. That’s because they didn’t accept the facts as I stated them and insisted that I make a record according to what they wanted. So, I can’t guarantee that the factual parts are entirely factual. The second type are the “reflections.” These are wholly untruthful, as they were written under coercion. If I hadn’t written them, hadn’t signed my name, I would have died there in that guesthouse.

They deliberately tortured me past the point I could bear it. I wanted to kill myself. To prevent me from doing so, they increased the number of “chaperones” (陪护人员) from two to three. The three of them surrounded me, watching me carefully lest I try to kill myself. After the first seven days, they interrogated me during the daytime and stopped at night. After about 20 days, they were afraid I’d kill myself and the number of chaperone shifts increased from three to four, with the number on each shift increasing from two to three. They watched me closely every minute, afraid that I would try to kill myself by ramming my head against the wall. In that state of wanting to die but not being able to do so, if I didn’t follow one of the three options they gave me and say in my statements that I acted for fame, for profit, or to oppose the Party and socialism, I would have been tortured to death. I had no other choice.

CHEN: In the interrogation transcripts there are a lot of statements where you say detrimental things about yourself and say that you opposed the Party, socialism, and the current political system. What’s your opinion of those documents?

XIE: I didn’t say any of those things and I would never use such language. Those transcripts were typed up by the police; I was only forced to sign them. Folders of transcripts without a single correction or amendment—could that possibly be for real? I read the transcripts and said that those weren’t my words. I asked for an accurate record and requested changes. Yin Zhuo said: “We don’t allow changes to transcripts in our public security unit.” So I could only sign. They didn’t let me sleep for the first seven days and tortured and tormented me until I agreed to sign. So that’s how there came to be so many transcripts from the 19th on.

CHEN: Let’s end the interview here for now. Have you told the truth in these interviews the past few days?

XIE: Yes, it’s the truth. This is how I was treated during residential surveillance.

CHEN: Please read the transcript carefully. This afternoon I’ll bring you a typed version for you to check and sign.

XIE: All right.

[Signed by Xie Yang and his lawyer]

I have read the transcript above and it matches what I have said.

Xie Yang
January 6, 2017
CHEN Jiangang [lawyer]

时间: 2017年01月12日14:45:48 开始;
地点:长沙第二看守所西二会见室(谢阳专用);
被会见人谢阳,以下简称谢;
会见人 陈建刚律师,以下简称律师;
记录: 陈建刚 ;

律师: 谢阳你好,我们继续接着上次的事情谈。
谢:好的。
律师:我先向你传达一下外面很多朋友的问候,请你保重。
谢:谢谢大家(失声哽咽)。
律师:你回忆一下,你在被指定监视居住期间,警方审讯你的时候有没有给你传唤证等法律文件?
谢:没有。他们24小时轮班,24小时之中轮班审讯,我身边始终有警察,根本没有任何传唤文件。
律师:你什么时候到的看守所?到看守所之后的情况有改善吗?
谢:2016年1月9日我被送到看守所。到看守所之后也没有好转,我继续被逼迫。
我在去看守所之前,也就是在指定监视居住期间,因为这个时间就要结束了,我就要被带到看守所了,所以审讯我的尹卓等人就非常刻意、明显地提审我,想做几份他们对我没有刑讯的笔录,要求我自己承认没有对我实施过任何刑讯,想让我签名。我都没有配合。在案卷中2015年12月21日的笔录中显示,他们问指定监视居住期间是否保证了我的合法权益,我的回答是“基本保证了”,这份笔录我签名了。这种保证是保证了我活着,没有被整死而已。我只能这样说,我说受了刑讯逼供他们不可能记录,还会继续折磨我。他们对这样的笔录很不满意,让我明确地说没有对我采取任何刑讯,百分之百保障了我的权利。我拒绝了。离开关押我的颐天宾馆之前最后的一段时间,他们反反复复找我做笔录,就是一个目的,前面扯很多,最后就是想让我不经意间签字确认没有刑讯、保障了我的权利这件事,但我很明白他们的想法,我都没有上当。所以有好多笔录他们没有附卷。
2016年1月8日检察院决定对我逮捕,1月9日给我看逮捕证。其实 这都是走一个过场。因为看守所在1月6日的时候就已经为我准备房间了。
律师:你怎么知道看守所为你准备房间的事情?
谢:我进来后知道的。在看守所每个监室所住的人都在25人以上,甚至到30人,每个房间都是这样。我来了以后被关押的房间是东四监区第十监室,里面原来有28个人,但是1月6日突然把14个人调到其他监室去了,并且在监室内安装了高清摄像头。直到现在我们房间还是15个人,这是看守所独一无二的。安装高清摄像头也是独一无二的。其他被关押的人都知道这是针对我的。1月6日给我准备房间,1月9日下发逮捕证,这只是走过场装样子而已。
律师:你说一说你到了看守所以后的境遇?有保障你的基本人权吗?有继续逼迫你吗?
谢:1月9日到了看守所之后,在开始的一段时间内看守所对我是比较照顾的,但这都是有目的的。我的管教叫做袁进,你要记住这个名字,他对我做了太多恶毒的事情。袁进开始时对我照顾,不断地劝我认罪,让我配合警方。但我没有罪,我没有触犯任何罪名。我当然不能违心地认罪。这种劝告维持了3个月,到了16年3月份的时候,袁进看我不听他劝告,于是开始折磨我。
律师:你说袁进开始折磨你,他是如何做的?
谢:第一步是从同监室人员上孤立我,明确向其他人表示禁止任何人和我有任何交往,不能和我说话,不能借东西给我,不能让我参与打牌、下棋等娱乐活动。如果任何人敢和我有任何交往、交流就会被调到其他房间做“小口子”。
律师:什么叫做“小口子”?
谢:这是监室里的说法。在一个监室里待的时间长的人叫做“老口子”,新来的人叫做“小口子”。新来监室的“小口子”都要受气,多干活受欺负等等,而“老口子”则因为在这个监室待的时间长了就成了老人了,有威望,不受气,能享受优待。所以任何人都不愿意到其他房间重新做“小口子”。
律师:除了从人员上孤立你以外还有其他手段吗?
谢:有。警察袁进从经济上断绝我花钱的权利。我们在被监禁期间每个月有260元钱的生活费,但这是远远不够的,需要买其他东西就需要用自己的钱,自己的钱就是家属和朋友们存的钱。每个人都可以用自己的钱买一些食物,不然没得吃,吃不饱。袁进禁止我花钱,禁止我购买任何日用品,我吃不饱饭,没有菜。不让我买生活用品,包括牙膏、手纸等等,我陷入窘迫的地步,别人受了恐吓都不能和我说话,不能借我任何东西,我甚至上厕所没有手纸(哽咽哭泣)。但我还是没有屈服,没有认罪。
律师:然后呢?
谢:我从2015年1月9日被关押到看守所以来,现在1年多了,这1年多之中来见我的警察、检察官、看守所管教、领导等等,就一个目的,让我认罪。我有一些记录(翻找记录),我都记着时间,我一一给你说一下。
我的案子是政治案,我料到他们对我会把我案件的期限拉到法律规定的最长期限的,所以侦查阶段从指定监视居住6个月到逮捕后2个月,到延长逮捕1个月,到再延长2个月,到最后再延长2个月。这样在侦查阶段期限就延长到了最长期限,最后的期限是2016年8月9日。
2016年7月21日,湖南国保总队李峰和长沙公安局国保支队第六大队副大队长朱恒和张重实律师一块来,因为我认识张律师,张律师是我家属为我聘请的律师。他们来了还是劝我认罪。李峰说他代表省公安厅还是希望我认罪。我说这是不是律师会见,他们说是,我就说如果是律师会见那么请你们回避,李峰和朱恒都不出去,一直在外面身边,我和张律师也没能谈几句话。
在16年8月初的几天,9日之前,湖南省公安厅国保总队工作人员、长沙公安局国保支队支队长李克伟、长沙公安局国保第六大队大队长王铁铊一起来了五六个人,看守所的领导们安排他们在看守所办公室里和我见面。
律师:稍等,他们见你为什么不到提讯室而是到了办公室呢?
谢:他们不需要遵守任何法律和制度的。他们来了要求我认罪。我当时想如果认罪轻处理能保证我出去以后继续做律师的话,我可以谈一谈。他们很高兴,立即报告领导,还让人查了查规定,结果是查清了只要是故意犯罪以后就不能做律师,这种情况下我拒绝认罪,我本来就没有犯罪。谈了三四个小时,最终我还是拒绝认罪。他们一再说我不要自找苦吃,不要错过了机会,不要辜负了他们的好意。
李克伟对看守所我的管教警察袁进有承诺,如果他帮忙把我搞服了,让我认罪的话,就可以帮他调到长沙市高新区某派出所去工作。
律师:你说李克伟对袁进有承诺,你怎么知道的?
谢:袁进自己说的。他有一次对我说希望我赶快认罪出去,说“你认罪出去吧,你走了我就能调到高新区某派出所去工作”,具体哪个派出所我忘记了。
律师:然后呢?
谢: 到了16年8月9日,这是我在公安局手中控制的最后期限,如果移送审查起诉警方就不能控制我了,他们将没有权力来禁止律师会见了。案卷中长沙市公安局《起诉意见书》中的日期是2016年8月5日,但8月4人就给了我移送审查起诉告知书。我以为这个时候我家属为我聘请的辩护律师可以来会见我了。但对我的迫害是从公安局一直延续到检察院的,检察院完全配合长沙市公安局来继续整我。
律师:【2017年01月12日16:29:39】(警察进入会见室表示时间到了)我们今天就到这里吧,明天继续。

Date: January 12, 2017
Location: Interview Room 2W, Changsha Number Two Detention Center
Interviewee: Xie Yang (谢阳, “XIE”)
Interviewer: Lawyer Chen Jian’gang (陈建刚, “CHEN”)
Transcription by Chen Jiangang

[The interview began at 2:45:48 p.m.]

CHEN: Hello, Xie Yang. Let’s continue where we left off last time.

XIE: Okay.

CHEN: First, I want to convey greetings and concern from many friends on the outside who urge you to take good care of yourself.

XIE: Thanks, everyone [quietly chokes back tears].

CHEN: Can you recall whether the police who interrogated you ever gave you a formal summons notice or any other legal documents while you were being held in residential surveillance in a designated location?

XIE: No. They took shifts around the clock. I had police around me all the time, but they never gave me any summons notice.

CHEN: When did you get to the detention center? Did things improve once you got here?

XIE: I was brought to the detention center on January 9, 2016. There was no improvement, and the coercion continued.

Before I was brought to the detention center, while still in residential surveillance, Yin Zhuo (尹卓) and the others became very deliberate and obvious in their questioning. Because time had run out and I had to be sent to the detention center, they wanted some records showing me saying that they had not tortured me. They wanted to get me on the record admitting that no one had tortured me and then get me to sign the transcript, but I refused to cooperate.

In my case file, the transcript of the interrogation on December 21, 2015, shows them asking me whether my legal rights had been protected during the period of residential surveillance in a designated location, to which I answered that they had been “basically protected.” That’s the record I signed. By “basically protected,” I mean that they ensured that I stayed alive and didn’t torture me to death—that’s all. That’s the most I could say. Had I said that they tortured me into confessing, they wouldn’t record my words on paper and they’d keep on tormenting me. They were very unhappy with this interrogation record and wanted me to state clearly that no one had ever used torture against me and protected my rights 100 percent. But I refused.

In the last period right before leaving the Yitian Guesthouse (颐天宾馆) where they’d held me, they repeatedly came to get me to record a statement. They had only one goal: to get me to inadvertently confirm with my signature that they hadn’t tortured me and that they’d protected my rights. But I didn’t fall for their tricks. So, there are a lot of records that didn’t get put in the case file.

The procuratorate issued its arrest decision on January 8, 2016, and I was shown the arrest warrant on January 9. But actually, this was only a formality as the detention center had already started preparing my cell on January 6.

CHEN: How do you know that the detention center had already started preparing your cell?

XIE: I found out after I got here. Each cell at the detention center houses more than 25 people, sometimes as many as 30. Every cell is like that. When I got here, they put me in Cell 10 on the 4E Block. Originally, there were 28 people in there, but on January 6 they suddenly transferred 14 people to other cells and installed a high-definition camera inside. To this day, there are still 15 people in our cell—a unique situation in the detention center. The high-definition camera is also unique. Everyone in the cell knows that it’s there for me. They prepared the cell on January 6 and issued the arrest warrant on January 9. It was clearly only a formality.

CHEN: Can you describe your situation since coming to the detention center? Are your fundamental human rights being protected? Or have they continued to coerce you?

XIE: After arriving at the detention center on January 9, I was initially rather well taken care of. But they had their objectives. My counselor is named Yuan Jin (袁进) — make a note of that name, because he’s done lots of terrible things to me. At first, Yuan Jin treated me well, continually urging me to admit guilt and cooperate with the police. But I wasn’t guilty of anything and hadn’t committed any crimes, so of course I wasn’t going to go against my conscience and admit guilt. These admonitions went on for three months. Then in March 2016, Yuan Jin saw that I wasn’t listening to him and so he started tormenting me.

CHEN: You say Yuan Jin tormented you — how?

XIE: First, he got my cellmates to shun me by clearly prohibiting others from having any interaction with me. They weren’t allowed to speak to me, lend me anything, or play cards or chess with me. Anyone who dared have any interaction or communication with me would be transferred to another cell to become the “new boy.”

CHEN: What does that mean, “new boy”?

XIE: This is jailhouse lingo. Someone who’s been in a cell for a long time is called an “old boy.” A new arrival is called the “new boy.” “New boys” all get bullied and are given more work, while “old boys” have prestige and aren’t bullied on account of their status as veterans. Plus, they get special treatment. So no one wants to go to a new cell and become a “new boy” again.

CHEN: Besides getting cellmates to shun you, were there other methods?

XIE: Yes. Officer Yuan Jin cut off my right to spend money. In jail we get 260 yuan each month for living expenses, but this is far from enough and you have to spend your own money to buy things. That’s the money that gets deposited in your account by family and friends. Everyone can use their own money to purchase some food, otherwise you don’t get enough to eat. Yuan Jin prohibited me from spending money, from purchasing any daily-use items. I didn’t get enough to eat and had no vegetables. I wasn’t allowed to buy daily necessities like toothpaste or toilet paper. I was deeply distressed—everyone had been threatened not to speak with me or lend me anything. I didn’t even have toilet paper when I went to the toilet [chokes with sobs]. But I still didn’t give in and didn’t admit guilt.

CHEN: What happened then?

XIE: It’s been over a year since I was brought to the detention center on January 9, 2015. During this year, all the police, procurators, detention center counsellors, and officials who’ve come to see me all have had a single goal: to get me to admit guilt. I have some notes [searches through notes] . . . I’ve made note of the times. Let me tell you about them one by one.

My case is a political case. I anticipated that they would stretch the time limits in this case to the maximum limit possible under the law. Six months of investigation during residential surveillance plus two months under arrest, extended first for one month, then another two, and finally two more months. They stretched the investigation phase of the case as far as they could, to August 9, 2016.

On July 21, 2016, Li Feng (李峰) of the Hunan Domestic Security Unit and Zhu Heng (朱恒) of the Sixth Division of the Changsha Domestic Security Unit came to see me together with Zhang Zhongshi (张重实), the lawyer my family had hired on my behalf. They had also come to urge me to admit guilt. Li Feng said he’d come on behalf of the provincial public security department and hoped I’d admit guilt. I asked if this was a meeting with my lawyer. They said it was. I said, if that’s so please excuse yourselves. But Li Feng and Zhu Heng didn’t leave and stood right outside so that Lawyer Zhang and I couldn’t even exchange a few words with each other.

For a few days in early August 2016—before the 9th, someone from the Domestic Security Unit of the Hunan Provincial Public Security Department: Li Kewei (李克伟), head of the Changsha Public Security Bureau’s Domestic Security Unit, and Wang Tietuo (王铁铊), head of the Sixth Division of the Changsha Domestic Security Unit, came together to see me—there were five or six of them in all. The detention center officials arranged for them to meet with me in the detention center office.

CHEN: Wait a minute. They met with you in the office, rather than in an interrogation room?

XIE: They don’t have to obey any laws or institutional rules! They came to get me to admit guilt. At the time, I thought that if admitting guilt would lead to lenient treatment that would ensure I could continue to work as a lawyer after I got out, I could discuss it. They were happy to hear that and immediately reported my answer up to their superiors and got someone to look up the regulations. What they found was that commission of an intentional crime would mean that I’d be unable to be a lawyer. Under those circumstances, I refused to admit guilt, since I’d committed no crime to begin with. We discussed it for three or four hours, but ultimately I still refused to admit guilt. They said over and over that I shouldn’t make things difficult for myself, that I mustn’t waste this opportunity, that I shouldn’t turn my back on their good intentions.

Li Kewei had promised Yuan Jin, my counsellor at the detention center, that if Yuan could help get me to give in and admit guilt, then Li would help him get a transfer to a police station in Changsha’s Gaoxin District.

CHEN: You say Li Kewei made a promise to Yuan Jin—how do you know that?

XIE: Yuan Jin said so himself. He once told me that he hoped I’d hurry up and admit guilt. He said: “Admit your guilt—once you’re gone, I can get a transfer to work at that police station in Gaoxin District.” I’ve forgotten which police station exactly.

CHEN: What next?

XIE: August 9, 2016, was the last day the public security bureau could hold me. Once they transferred the case for prosecution they had no more control over me and they’d have no power to prevent me from meeting with my lawyer. The date on the Changsha Public Security Bureau’s prosecution recommendation is August 5, 2016, but on August 4 they’d already delivered me notice that my case was being reviewed for prosecution. I thought that this meant that the lawyers my family had hired could now come meet with me. But my persecution shifted from the public security bureau to the procuratorate. The procuratorate fully cooperated with the Changsha Public Security Bureau to continue treating me badly.

[A police officer enters to say that time is up.]

CHEN: That’s all for today. Let’s continue tomorrow.

[The interview concluded at 4:29:39 p.m. on January 12, 2017.]

【2017年01月13日09:30:38】
律师:我们继续昨天谈的继续说,你说检察院和公安局联合整你,为什么这样说?
谢:我在后来见到了我的律师张重实,他告诉我他和蔺其磊每天在看守所要求会见我,上下午都来,但看守所就是不让见,说是我在被提审。事实上我是在被提审,但法律规定的48小时内应该安排律师会见,这都成了看守所和检察院、公安局手中的废纸。
律师:为什么你这样认为?
谢:那几天长沙市检察院的检察官每天都来提审,从上午9点到下午4:30看守所下班,每天来提审我,天天如此,就是以这种方式杜绝律师见到我。
来见我的共计有8个检察官,整整一个周的时间他们天天来提审,过了这一个周以后案件就发挥补充侦查,案件又回到公安局手中,且他们成功地用提审的名义阻拦了律师会见我。
你记一下他们的名字,有段小龙、姜彬、李治明、王志勇、方惠、胡勇超、李维宁,还有一位金副处长,名字不知道。李维宁检察官是长沙市检察院公诉二处的处长,他不是本案的承办人,他来的目的就是一个,要求我认罪。暗示我公安局对我刑讯的事情不能说,他还讲公安系统和检察院通过湖南大学的领导找我老婆,要求我妻子配合,对我妻子施加压力,不要为我奔波喊冤。
其他检察官来提审还比较含蓄,提示我认罪,其中检察官段小龙比较露骨,他找我谈就是两项目标,一个是恐吓,一个是要求我认罪。段小龙恐吓我“你要认罪。有些话你不能乱说,有些事情你不能向检察官说。” 他说的不能说的事情就是不能对外说我曾经受过刑讯逼供的事情。什么检察官审查起诉,这都是假的,公安局和检察院是联合起来整我,制造政治冤案。他们没有权利的制衡,有的是合作。
律师:退回补充侦查后呢?
谢:2016年8月16日案件退回公安局,我的律师仍然被禁止来见我。其实没有什么补充侦查,因为连续两次补充侦查,目标就是一个,把期限拉到最长的法律极限,让我屈服,让我认罪。
16年9月28日,长沙市检察院公诉二处李维宁处长来找我,要求我认罪,不要乱讲话,就是不能说刑讯逼供受折磨的事情。到了10月9日,李维宁再次来找我谈,还是要求我认罪和闭嘴。到10月17日,李维宁又来找我,还是一个方向,要求我认罪、闭嘴。他这几次来都不谈案情的,来谈的就是两个目的,要求我认罪和闭嘴不言。
到了16年10月26日,公安局最后一次补充侦查期间,胡云峰和叶云两个国保来找我,要求我认罪和闭嘴。胡云峰明确地向我说他们手中有我在监视居住期间的全部的录音录像。所有的侦查人员都知道,指定监视居住期间的录像他们都有。笔录中记下了这些话,但是没有附卷。你看提讯证,如果有记录的话应该有他们来提讯我的记录,但我不能保证检察院或看守所能给你们辩护人这材料。
第二天也就是16年10月27日,长沙市国保支队第六大队大队长王铁铊和教导员叶云再次来见我,还是要求我认罪、闭嘴。他们没有做笔录。
到了11月04日上午,长沙市国保支队支队长李克伟一个人来见我,看守所管教安排在看守所的办公室进行了面谈,和8月初来见我一样的安排。李克伟就是两项要求认罪、闭嘴。
16年11月14日,李克伟一个人在看守所办公室见我,希望我把握机会,认罪闭嘴。
16年12月07日,湖南省人民检察院公诉二处处长刘晓红在长沙市检察院公诉二处处长李维宁的陪同下到看守所见我,代表湖南省检察院希望我把握机会,认罪闭嘴。
律师:我作为辩护律师介入以后他们又找你谈过吗?
谢:有。17年1月6日上午你来见我受到阻拦,看守所所领导当时在找我谈话,大意是“不要相信律师,律师救不了你,相信党相信政府是你唯一的出路,认罪伏法,不要乱说话,才可以早点回家。”我就是听一听而已。我知道律师肯定已经来了,他们阻拦不让我会见。
再然后就是1月11日,来了三个人,我哥哥谢扬德、长沙市公安局国保支队副支队在王德华、洞口县公安局国保大队大队长谢乐石三人来见我,王德华和谢乐石他们明确说在这个阶段他们没有权力来找我,但是他们说是应家属的要求来见我,不代表工作单位。谢乐石对我恐吓,说我微信、微博的发言要判刑在5年以上且不封顶,最高刑能15年——20年的。
律师:警方和检察院这么多人多次来找你要求你认罪你如何想?
谢:我是无罪的,完全无罪。我虽然在被折磨的生不如死的时候做过一些自污的签字,这都不是事实,也不能说明我犯罪。我享有言论自由,在微博和微信上发言是我的自由,这怎么可能是煽动颠覆国家政权罪呢?
律师:你会不会认罪?或者如果现在官方给你条件如果你能认罪就把你释放、取保候审,你会认罪吗?
谢:我现在没有认罪。让我认罪是一件比较荒唐的事情,如果我认罪就能证明我有罪了吗?这不是文化大革命的方式吗?我认罪就不需要看法律看证据了吗?但是有一点我需要向你说清楚,我今天没有认罪,我现在和你说,我的精神是自由的,我声明,我谢阳本人无罪。如果日后,就是在今天2017年1月13日以后出现我任何认罪的书面材料或者录音录像,那都不是事实,不是我内心真实的想法。即便我认罪也不代表我有罪,这需要看法律和证据。
即便是有一天我认罪了,也是迫于交易,迫于对我的折磨,我完全无罪,但是就是因为我发表了一些自由言论,我参与了一些为民维权的案件,长沙市公安局就这样折磨我,他们才是真正的罪人和凶手。如果将来我有任何认罪的表述,都是一种交易。我知道我家人迫切想见到我,我父母都年迈了,非常思念我。如果我认罪,是我用来保命的一种交易。今天(2017-01-13),在我可以向律师自由表达我真实想法的时候,我要明确地说我是无罪的。
律师:你是否要求或者同意或者授权我公布和你的会见笔录?
谢:我授权辩护律师陈建刚律师、刘正清律师决定在一定的时间公布我的会见笔录。
【谢阳和律师签字】
以上笔录我看过,和我说的相符。
谢阳
2017年01月13日
陈建刚【律师】

[The interview resumed at 9:30:38 a.m. on January 13, 2017.]

CHEN: Let’s continue where we left off yesterday. You said that the procuratorate and the public security bureau were working together to treat you badly. Why do you say that?

XIE: I later met with my lawyer, Zhang Zhongshi. He told me that he and my other lawyer Lin Qilei (蔺其磊) had been coming to the detention center every day in order to meet with me. Morning, afternoon—it didn’t matter. The detention center said they couldn’t meet with me because I’d been taken for questioning by the prosecutors. I had, in fact, been taken for questioning. But the law says that they have to arrange for lawyers to meet with a detainee within 48 hours. To the detention center, the procuratorate, and the public security bureau, the law was nothing but a piece of scrap paper.

CHEN: Why do you say that?

XIE: Those days, the procurators from the Changsha Procuratorate took me out for questioning every day from 9 a.m. until the detention center offices closed at 4:30 p.m. Every day they came to question me like that, just so they could refuse to let my lawyers meet with me.

There were eight procurators in all who came to meet with me. For an entire week, they took me out for questioning every day. After the week was over, they sent the case back for additional investigation. The case was then back in the hands of the public security bureau. They’d successfully used the excuse of questioning me to obstruct my lawyers from meeting with me.

Write down these names: Duan Xiaolong (段小龙), Jiang Bin (姜彬), Li Zhiming (李治明), Wang Zhiyong (王志勇), Fang Hui (方惠), Hu Yongchao (胡勇超), and Li Weining (李维宁). There was also a deputy division head surnamed Jin whose full name I don’t know. Li Weining is the head of the Second Public Prosecution Division at the Changsha Procuratorate (长沙市检察院公诉二处处长). He’s not in charge of this case and only came to see me with one objective: to get me to admit guilt. He hinted that I shouldn’t say anything about the public security bureau’s torture of me. He also said that public security and the procuratorate had gone to officials at Hunan University to speak to my wife and ask her to cooperate. They put pressure on her to stop going around to proclaim my innocence.

The other prosecutors were more reserved in their attempts to get me to admit guilt. But Duan Xiaolong was relatively blatant. He had two objectives in his discussions with me: one was to intimidate me, the other was to try to get me to admit guilt. Duan Xiaolong said: “You have to admit guilt. There are some things you can’t go around saying, some things you can’t say to the prosecutors.” He meant I couldn’t go around telling people on the outside about how I’d been subjected to torture. What kind of prosecutorial review by the procuratorate was this—it was all a sham! The public security bureau and procuratorate were working together against me to manufacture this political miscarriage of justice. There’s no balance of powers, only cooperation!

CHEN: What happened after your case was sent back for review?

XIE: On August 16, 2016, the case was sent back to the public security bureau and my lawyer was still prohibited from meeting with me. Actually, there was no real additional investigation. The two consecutive periods of additional investigation were only about one thing: extending the legal time limit to its furthest extent in order to get me to give in and admit guilt.

On September 28, 2016, Li Weining of the Changsha Procuratorate came to see me again and get me to admit guilt and to not go around talking out of turn—by which he meant talking about the way I’d been tortured and mistreated. Li came again on October 9 to tell me to admit guilt and keep my mouth shut. Li came once again on October 17, with the same mission. He never came to discuss the details of the case. There were only two objectives: to get me to admit guilt and keep my mouth shut.

On October 26, 2016, during the last period of additional investigation, domestic security police Hu Yunfeng (胡云峰) and Ye Yun (叶云) came to see me and get me to admit guilt and keep my mouth shut. Hu Yunfeng explicitly told me that they had all of the audio and video recordings from my time in residential surveillance. All the investigators knew that they had the video. There’s a transcript of that conversation, but it’s not in the case file. Take a look at the interrogation records; if there’s a record of the interrogation, they should have a record of that conversation. But I can’t guarantee that the procuratorate or the detention center will give those documents to you as a defense lawyer.

The following day, October 27, 2016, Wang Tietuo of the Changsha Domestic Security Unit and Ye Yun came to see me again to try to get me to admit guilt and to tell me to keep my mouth shut. They didn’t make a record of that.

On November 4, Li Kewei of the Changsha Domestic Security Unit came by himself to see me. The detention center arranged for him to meet with me in the office, like they’d done at the beginning of August. Li Kewei had the same two demands: admit guilt and shut mouth.

On November 14, 2016, Li Kewei met me alone in the detention center office. He hoped I’d seize the opportunity, admit guilt, and keep my mouth shut.

On December 7, 2016, the head of the Second Public Prosecution Division of the Hunan Procuratorate, Li Xiaohong (刘晓红), came together with Li Weining of the Changsha Procuratorate to meet me at the detention center and express the hope, on behalf of the provincial procuratorate, that I would seize the opportunity, admit guilt, and keep my mouth shut.

CHEN: Has anyone come to speak with you since I became your defense lawyer?

XIE: Yes. When you were prevented from meeting with me on the morning of January 6, 2017, officials from the detention center came to see me. The gist of their message was: “Don’t trust your lawyer. Lawyers can’t save you. Your only path is to trust the party and the government. The only way you’ll get to go home early is by admitting guilt and submitting to the law’s judgment.” I just listened. I knew that my lawyers had already arrived and they were preventing them from meeting with me.

Then there was another time on January 11. Three people came: my brother, Xie Yangde (谢扬德), Wang Dehua (王德华), deputy head of the Changsha Domestic Security Unit, and Xie Leshi (谢乐石), head of the Dongkou County Domestic Security Unit. Wang Dehua and Xie Leshi explicitly said that they had no power to seek a meeting with me during this phase of the case but explained that they’d come to see me at the request of my brother and did not represent their respective units. Xie Leshi threatened me, saying my posts on WeChat and Weibo would get me a sentence of at least five years with no cap—the sentence could run as high as 15 or 20 years.

CHEN: What do you make of the fact that so many people from the police and the procuratorate have come to see you so many times in order to try to get you to admit guilt?

XIE: I’m innocent, completely innocent. Even though I signed some self-incriminating statements after being tortured to the point where I didn’t want to live anymore, those aren’t the facts and they don’t prove that I’ve committed a crime. I have freedom of expression and the statements I made on Weibo and WeChat were my right. How can that be inciting subversion of political power?

CHEN: Are you going to admit guilt? Or, put another way, if the authorities come and say they’ll release you or grant you bail if you admit guilt, will you do so?

XIE: I haven’t admitted guilt up to now. Trying to get me to do so is kind of a ridiculous idea. Am I guilty just because I admit guilt? Isn’t that how things worked during the Cultural Revolution? If I admit guilt, don’t you have to consider the law and the evidence?

But there’s one thing I need to make clear to you. As of today, I haven’t admitted guilt. I tell you now—I declare of my own free will, that I, Xie Yang, am innocent. If, at some point after today, January 13, 2017, there were to appear any document or audiovisual recording of me admitting guilt, it would not be the truth and would not reflect my real inner thoughts. Even if I admit guilt, it doesn’t make me guilty. That depends on the law and the evidence.

Even if I were one day to admit guilt, it would be because I was forced to make some deal or forced to do so because I was tortured. I am completely innocent, but because of some of the things I’ve posted and because I’ve taken part in some rights defense cases, the Changsha Public Security Bureau is out to get me. They are the real criminals and murderers. If, in the future, I were to make any admissions of guilt, it would be a kind of trade. I know my family wants to see me very much and my parents are advanced in years and miss me very much. If I admit guilt, it will be in exchange for preserving my life. Today [January 13, 2017], while I am allowed to express myself truthfully to my lawyer, I want to say clearly that I am innocent.

CHEN: Do you want or agree to authorize me to release the record of our interviews to the public?

XIE: I authorize my defense lawyers, Chen Jiangang and Liu Zhengqing (刘正清), to decide to release the record of our interviews to the public at a certain time.

[The end of the transcript.]

Addendum 2017-Mar-08 Xie Yang’s handwritten letter stating:
-He met with his lawyer, the transcript is accurate and he is innocent
-since July 2015 he has been tortured
-if he confesses, do not believe it, as it has been done under torture

Xie Yang handwritten letter, Changsha, China 2017 Jan 13

Xie Yang handwritten letter, Changsha, China 2017 Jan 13

Addendum 2017 Mar 23 Canada, 10 other countries call out China for torturing human rights lawyers Canada and 10 other countries have asked China to stop torture of human rights lawyers and to end their “residential surveillance at a designated place”, where people can be held for up to 6 months in a secret location without informing their families or lawyers. The joint letter has not been published. It was signed by the ambassadors from Australia, Canada, Japan, Switzerland, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Sweden and the United Kingdom. It seems like some of the world has noticed and calls on China to repeal their legislation and release their human rights lawyers from detention.

Addendum 2017 May 08 China rights lawyer Xie Yang’s family says US helped them flee: The US helped Xieyang’s family, his wife Chen Guiqiu and two kids, flee China to the US. They were very lucky.

Chen Guiqiu, wife of Chinese lawyer and now prisoner Xie Yang, arrives in Texas after a harrowing escape from China and Thailand. Welcome to North America. Your journey was difficult, but now you are safe.

Chen Guiqiu, wife of Chinese lawyer and now prisoner Xie Yang, arrives in Texas after a harrowing escape from China and Thailand. Welcome to North America. Your journey was difficult, but now you are safe.

China lawyer’s family says US helped them flee

The relatives of Chen who were pressed by the government to travel to Thailand have had their passports confiscated upon their return to China. They have been repeatedly interrogated, and their jobs have been threatened, she said.

The electricity at Chen’s apartment has since been cut, forcing her elderly father to move back to his village. Authorities have emptied her Chinese bank accounts, she said.

“All the things we tried to expose, all the articles we used to write about the truth of 7-09 — the harassment, the torture, the denial of our children’s schooling, the forced evictions — we were always smeared so quickly,” she said.

Heart breaking.

1 thought on “Chinese Lawyer Xie Yang Tortured for Confession

  1. Pingback: Canada vs China: Arrest, Detention and Trial Differences – Don Tai (Canada) Blog

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