A court in Jiangsu province has refused to deal with the appeal application of prominent human rights lawyer Yu Wensheng, saying there was nothing wrong with an earlier court ruling.
Yu was sentenced to four years in jail and stripped of his political rights for three years after being convicted of subverting state power during a closed-door trial last June.
The 53-year-old was arrested by Beijing police in January 2018 after he wrote an open letter calling for constitutional reforms, including multi-candidate elections.
In a written decision, the Jiangsu Provincial Higher People’s Court said Yu had spread rumors and attempted to subvert state power by trying to overthrow the country’s socialist regime.
It upheld the ruling made in the original trial, saying the lower court had considered all the evidence in a comprehensive and accurate manner and handed down an appropriate sentence.
The court also denied that Yu’s sentencing had anything to do with his support for Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement.
In response, Yu's wife, Xu Yan, said it was unfair and unreasonable for the higher court to make the decision without holding a proper hearing into the case.
She insisted that her husband is innocent, and plans to file a complaint with the court.