Xie Yalong Extorted Confession By Torture
On 24th April, a court session dealing with the second instance of “crack down on match-fixing, anti-football betting and purging mafia” campaign involving China’s football was held. Xie Yalong, former senior official of the Chinese Football Association (CFA) was brought to trial on suspicion of taking bribes.
Xie recanted his words during the trial, saying that he had been subjected to being hung and beaten, shocked via electric batons, slapped in the face and other tortures. Xie said that he had to plead guilty in order to survive,
and to bargain a release for his detained wife.
On 24th April, Xie Yalong stood trial in the court of Dandong, Liaoning. Xie was charged with12 crimes, each involving amounts of up to 1.72 million RMB.
Xie Yalong was former CFA vice chairman, director and deputy Party secretary of Management Center of Football. Xie was arrested in September 2010 on suspicion of match-mixing and taking bribes.
In the trial recess period, Xie’s lawyer Jin Xiaoguang and Chen Gang said outside the court to the public that Xie said during interrogation, he had suffered from tortures like being hung and beaten; stripped naked to sit on a tiger bench; poured with freezing water; slapped in the face until bleeding;
arrhythmia caused by electric baton shock and sleep deprivation for five consecutive days.
Xie’s lawyers said that the investigators had detained Xie’s wife who suffers from uremia to “cooperate into their probe” into Xie. Xie’s son was also prevented from studying abroad.
In court, Xie Yalong reportedly testified giving investigators’ names.
He said that his case was not going through legal proceedings, nor did he meet with lawyers. After being tortured to confess, Xie had to “plead guilty”
in order to survive to reveal the truth one day.
Lawyer Jin Xiaoguang said that in the court, the investigators denied having used any “torture" to gain Xie’s testimony. The defense counsel handed the court “proof of illegally collecting evidence", and applied for an investigation into identifying Xie’s injuries.
China’s lawyer Tang Jingling points out that “extortion of confession by torture” has long existed in China. Like Wang Lijun and Bo Xilai, both prosecuted others using such means.
Tang Jingling gives the reason behind China’s rampant “extortion of confession by torture”. This is because there is no measure that could be taken to wipe it out under the tyranny system, says Tang.
Tang Jingling: “In recent few years, the regime has extensively used torture in their case handling. For example, they tortured Human rights activists and
Falun Gong practitioners. Such large-scale criminal acts are deemed crimes in
the court of law. That is, the government are committing crimes. But it was protected by an entire ruling political system, thus such crimes wouldn’t be revealed, I think.”
Tang Jingling adds that without realization of the separation of powers, judicial independence and watchdog journalism, the fact of “extortion of confession by torture” will be seen massively in future.
Tang Jingling: “Xie Yalong said that he had been tortured and extorted to confess, but the judge in court asked him to provide evidence (video, audio or other forms). Wasn’t that ridiculous? It’s very ridiculous indeed. If he (the judge) could say these words, you can believe that he won’t accept such evidence."
Only four media outlets, including CCTV, were approved to sit in on Xie Yalong’s count trial. Xie said in court that he was incorruptible when he was a
new entrant to this industry. It was the system and hidden rules of China’s football industry that made him fall. Xie Yalong claimed that he was not a corrupt official.
China’s lawyer Jiang Tianyong reviews that inside the CCP’s political system, there are no so-called incorruptible officials.
Jiang Tianyong: “These people have never been subject to supervision. A vast number of facts show that people all believe there are no incorruptible officials inside this (CCP) system. This is a common view, no matter for a CCP member or for an official, they all admit it in private. And I also think so.”
Xie Yalong’s case was the second instance of “crack down on match-fixing, anti-football betting and purging mafia” campaign in China’s football industry. Other people on trial include Nan Yong, former CFA’s vice and
several former national-team soccer players, including Shen Si, Qi Hong and Jiang Jin. The first group of 48 implicated people were sentenced from the end of 2011 to early 2012.