China hands 4.5 year prison sentence to human rights lawyer

Tianjin: A court here sentenced human rights lawyer Wang Quanzhang to four and a half years in prison for subverting state power, on Monday.

Wang has already spent more than three and a half years in detention. He was one of the lawyers who was detained as part of a national crackdown in 2015 on political and religious dissent in China, reports CNN.

Apart from his prison sentence, Wang has been “deprived of his political rights” for the next five years, which means that he cannot vote, has no freedom of protest, speech or publication, and cannot hold any government-related jobs.

His trial in Tianjin on December 26 last year had attracted throngs of protesters, who had gathered outside the court to protest against his detention.

His wife, Li Wenzu, has been at the forefront of protests, including shaving her hair off in front of Beijing’s Supreme People’s Court to bring attention to Wang’s case in December last year.

Li had also undertaken a march from Beijing to Tianjin to “find her husband,” in April 2018.