Four residents of Guangzhou who openly voiced their support for the Occupy Central campaign in Hong Kong in 2014 were sentenced to jail Friday for between 18 months and four-and-a-half years, thestandnews.com reported.
They were charged with inciting subversion of the state’s political power.
The People’s Procuratorate of Guangzhou handed down the verdict Friday morning.
Wang Mo and Xie Wenfei were sentenced to four-and-a-half years, while Zhang Shengyu got four years on the same charge.
Online writer Liang Qinhui was given 18 months of imprisonment for spreading online messages in support of the Occupy Central movement.
Officials and representatives from the US, British, Belgian and Norwegian consulates were all denied access to the courtroom.
The four people’s lawyer, surnamed Chen, said his clients had only been holding a banner advocating genuine universal suffrage, something which is legitimate and endorsed in the Communist Party’s rules.
Chen said the actions of his clients have nothing to do with subversion and that the sentence was too heavy. An appeal will be launched.
It was alleged that Wang, Xie and Zhang were seen holding a banner supporting Occupy Central on a Guangzhou street in October 2014.
They were arrested by police right away.
Liang was arrested last year for publishing articles online supporting Occupy Central.
All four have been under detention for over a year.
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