9 year sentence for ex-China democracy leader

9 year sentence for ex-China democracy leader

A former Chinese democracy movement leader who was handed over to mainland China from Hong Kong - some say illegally - has been sentenced to nine years in prison on the charge of attempted fraud, his lawyer said Wednesday, AP reported.

Zhou Yongjun was sentenced last Friday in the southwestern city of Shehong after an initial hearing on Nov. 19, Chen Zerui told The Associated Press.

He was also fined 80,000 yuan ($11,700), but planned to appeal his conviction, Chen said.

A duty officer reached by phone at the court confirmed Zhou's conviction, but said he had no knowledge of the sentence or other details.

Zhou captured global attention in 1989 by kneeling on the steps of the Great Hall of the People beside Tiananmen Square in a plea for China's communist leaders to acknowledge student calls for political reforms and an end to corruption.

Hundreds, possibly thousands, of people are believed to have been killed in the army's crackdown on the demonstrations. Many veterans of the movement who were not exiled continue to suffer government harassment.

Zhou had been living in the United States since smuggling himself out of China in 1993, but was arrested in August 2008 while attempting to enter Hong Kong on a phony Malaysian passport bearing the name Wang Xingxiang.

Supporters say he was planning on returning to mainland China to visit his elderly parents and accuse Hong Kong's government of violating its own laws in sending him to the mainland.

Hong Kong was handed back to China in 1997 but maintains its British colonial era legal system and lacks a deportation and removal treaty with mainland China.

Details of the charges against Zhou remain murky, as is common in China's opaque legal system.

Chen says the case stems from a complaint by Hong Kong's Hang Seng bank about a suspicious request for the transfer of funds out of an account registered to Wang Xingxiang - the name in Zhou's fake passport.

The signature on the transfer form did not match that of the original account holder and the name Wang Xingxiang was placed on a money laundering watch list, according to Chen.

He said the amount of the attempted fraud was listed as $6 million Hong Kong dollars ($773,000), but declined to give other details of the case or Zhou's defense.

Zhou denied the fraud charge, saying he was the victim of bad luck and mistaken identity. He says he obtained the fake passport through an immigration agency, a common practice among Chinese exiles who often find themselves stateless after Beijing refuses to renew their passports.

Hong Kong's government refuses to comment on Zhou's case. Visitors whose travel documents do not meet requirements are usually returned to their "place of embarkation or origin," it has said in the past.

Georgia reports 546 coronavirus cases, 1 456 recoveries, 17 deaths
Georgia reports 546 coronavirus cases, 1 456 recoveries, 17 deaths
Georgia's import of tubes, pipes, hollow profiles from Turkey increases
Georgia's import of tubes, pipes, hollow profiles from Turkey increases
Georgia increases export of marine mammals, fish fats, oils and their fractions to Turkey
Georgia increases export of marine mammals, fish fats, oils and their fractions to Turkey
Loading Bars
Latest
Bazargan border reopened after unprecedented snow
Cobalt becomes most produced car in Uzbekistan last year
Turkey registers more than 5 200 new coronavirus cases
Mexican authorities recover 19 bodies, some shot and burned, in remote area
Israel bans international flights to curb coronavirus spread
Turkey to receive 6.5 million doses of China's vaccine next week
Dutch police arrest alleged Asian drug syndicate kingpin
Georgia reports 546 coronavirus cases, 1 456 recoveries, 17 deaths
Germany ready to assist Kyrgyzstan in implementing green economy policies
President Rouhani: Iran's economic ties entering new phase
UK detects 77 cases of South African COVID variant, nine of Brazilian
Azerbaijan shows footage from Ashaghi Aybasanli village of Fuzuli district (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Implementation of drilling operations continue in Iran's oil fields
China sees fall in new COVID-19 cases amid strict local lockdowns
Iran's NIDC declares number of drilled oil & gas wells
Iran unveils details of exports via Bilasuvar border checkpoint
Uzbekistan to launch charter flights from Russia to Tashkent
Chinese smartphone maker discloses amount invested in opening factories in Turkey
Buy/sell operations at Iran Mercantile Exchange revealed
Georgia's import of tubes, pipes, hollow profiles from Turkey increases
Body of Azerbaijani citizen killed on Turkish ship to be sent to his homeland soon - Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry
Israel to start COVID-19 vaccination for high school students
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for January 24
Azerbaijan confirms 568 more COVID-19 recoveries
Portugal votes for new president at height of pandemic
Expert talks promoting import of electric and hybrid vehicles to Azerbaijan
Turkmennebit opens tender for purchase of various equipment
Azerbaijan shows footage from Jomerd village of Kalbajar district (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Sales of goods at Iran Mercantile Exchange spike
Iran reveals amount of loans issued to manufacturing companies
Georgia increases export of marine mammals, fish fats, oils and their fractions to Turkey
S&P talks about Azerbaijan's GDP growth in 2022-2024
Turkey set to receive second vaccine shipment from China soon
Russia records over 21,100 daily coronavirus cases
Weekly review of Azerbaijani precious metals market
Kazakhstan's exports volume to Georgia increases multifold
Azerbaijan's strategic foreign exchange reserves increase year on year
Iran announces volume of sprat caught in Caspian Sea
Azerbaijan shares footage from Ashaghi Veysalli village of Fuzuli district (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Consumption of steel products in Iran increases
3 injured as blast hits vehicle in Kabul
Weekly review of Azerbaijani currency market
Georgia reveals data on exports of semi-finished products of iron or non-alloy steel to Turkey
Iranian companies join UN CTCN
Kazakhstan’s daily COVID-19 case count stands at 1,584
Weekly review of main events in Azerbaijan's transport sector
UK to quarantine visitors from nations with high COVID-19 risk
China rescues first person from Shandong gold mine: state media
Over 2 mln coronavirus cases registered in Colombia
Israel reports 4,550 new COVID-19 cases, 593,578 in total
Iran's Marun Oil & Gas Production Company manufactures certain equipment
Iran to begin COVID-19 vaccinations in coming weeks: President Rouhani
France registers 23,924 new COVID-19 cases, 230 deaths in one day
Turkmenenergo to sign new contracts with foreign companies
7.0-magnitude quake hits South Shetland Islands: CENC
Turkey reports 5,856 new COVID-19 cases, 2,424,328 in total
After first phone call, UK PM Johnson looks forward to working with Biden
UK records another 33,552 coronavirus cases, 1,348 deaths
WHO reports over 600,000 new daily cases of COVID-19
Azerbaijani, Turkish FMs discuss pirate attack on ship
Top Spanish general resigns over allegations of vaccination queue-jumping
Pirates hijack Turkish ship off coast of Guinea, one person killed
BMB Trade Group and Uzbek Saffron Research Center discuss saffron cultivation and processing
Trend TV shares video report from plundered during Armenian occupation Azerbaijani Zangilan
Belarus, Kazakhstan seek closer cooperation in exchange trade
Management of Azerbaijan's State Oil Company being improved - Decree
New staff of Azerbaijani SOCAR's Supervisory Board approved
Georgia's external merchandise trade down 14.8% in 2020
Turkey halts flights from Brazil due to new COVID-19 variant
Gas pressure in Iran's South Pars gas field projected to decrease
Iran's gas processing potential to increase
Portugal holds presidential election as COVID-19 cases spiral
Italy reports 488 coronavirus deaths and 13,331 new cases
Italy to rethink vaccine roll out if supply problems persist
US broadcaster, journalist Larry King dies aged 87
Russia signs deal with Turkey on vaccine production
Azerbaijani MoD issues footage from Kalbajar district's Gamishli village (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Manat exchange rate against dollar to remain unchanged - Standard & Poor's
Bahar Azadi gold coin price again falling in Iran
Azerbaijan considering issues of regional schools damaged during Karabakh War
Iranian Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale on January 24
State subsidy to increase from 10 to 15 GEL per 50 kg of wheat flour in Georgia
Goods transit via Iran's Bileh Savar on rise
Tax authorities of Kyrgyzstan, Russia discuss launch of joint project
Japan's COVID-19 death toll exceeds 5,000 as total cases surpass 360,000
Indian gov't confirms outbreak of bird flu
Azerbaijani president expresses condolences to Ukranian counterpart
Bulgaria to ease some COVID-19 rules, restaurants closed for now
COVID-19 vaccine delays may slow wider Irish roll-out, says PM
Azerbaijan confirms 705 more COVID-19 recoveries
WHO office in Azerbaijan discusses project on preventing deaths from COVID-19 pandemic
Uzbek-Korean Uz-Kor Gas Chemical to buy spare parts for water purifier via tender
Georgia increases import of vehicles from Turkey
Geostat reveals volume of ferroalloys exported from Georgia to Turkey
Iran oil export never reached zero - Iran's Oil Minister
Azerbaijani expert talks impact of recycling old cars on traffic jams
Weekly review of highlights in Azerbaijani ICT sector
Uzbekistan’s Uzpromstroybank reveals plans for strategic dev’t in 2021
WHO chief thanks India, PM Modi for 'support to global Covid-19 response'
Yukselish competition organizes webinar presented by Azerbaijani president's assistant (PHOTO)
All news