Appealer Beaten to Death in Front of Supreme Court

February 5, 2008 Updated: February 5, 2008

On February 4 at 4 p.m., three days before the Chinese New Year, appellant Li Guifen was beaten to death in front of the appeals office of the Supreme Court in Beijing.

Yu Guangzhong, an appellant from northwest China's Xinjiang Province witnessed the incident. Yu said: “Several people beat Li in front of the appeals office until she was dead. There were many people around the scene. After the police arrived, they kept other appellants away from the scene. When I saw her, she was already dead. She was about 50 years old. Two police officers at the scene took the killer away.”

Li was disabled and walked with her two knees. She has been appealing in Beijing for a dozen years. Other appellants suspect Li was beaten to death by thugs hired by her local government to stop her from appealing. The details are unknown.

February 4 is the last day the appeals office of China's Supreme Court receives submissions. By the afternoon, hundreds of appellants arrived at the appeals office.