China: Woman jailed for fighting daughter’s rape case now free

Tang Hui

Authorities on Friday released a woman sent to a labour camp for campaigning for harsher sentences for the seven men convicted of abducting, raping and prostituting her 11-year-old daughter, with officials apparently bowing to public pressure in the highly emotional case.

Tang Hui was ordered by police in Hunan province’s Yongzhou city last Thursday to serve 18 months in a labour camp for “disturbing social order and exerting a negative impact on society” for protesting in front of government buildings. The crusading mother’s case outraged the public and revived debate over China’s controversial use of re-education through labour, a system that allows for detention without trial and that many feel should be abolished.

Xinhua news agency said Tang was released after labour camp officials reviewed her appeal. Xinhua cited Hunan provincial publicity authorities as saying the camp decided to free her so she could take care of her daughter, who is now 17 years old. It said authorities were also investigating Tang’s claim that police falsified evidence in her daughter’s case.

Tang’s punishment was met with a storm of criticism from intellectuals, bloggers and even state media.

The state-run Global Times newspaper noted in an editorial on Tuesday that the public was livid over the case and went on to deliver an unusually frank critique of Tang’s treatment and China’s legal system.

“The Yongzhou police listed a series of Tang’s ‘illegal’ activities disturbing social order, including appealing in front of the local courts, blocking the way of officials and making a scene at a judicial branch, and so on,” it said. “But these activities didn’t severely harm the public’s interests.”

“It’s worth noting that China’s petition and labour re-education system both have loopholes, and can easily lead to controversies,” it said.

Tang’s daughter was kidnapped in October, 2006 in Yongzhou city in Hunan, raped, beaten and forced to work as a prostitute in a spa until her rescue in December of the same year.

Unhappy with the first round of convictions meted out in 2008, Tang has been fighting for harsher penalties for the defendants in her daughter’s case.

In June, the Hunan Provincial Higher People’s Court handed down tougher sentences, including death sentences for two of the men, life in prison for four others and a 15 year jail sentence for one. But Tang continued to fight for death penalties for all the men.

South China Morning Post

Categories: Human Rights & Social Issues

Tags: , , , , ,

8 replies

  1. Reblogged this on Chindia Alert: forewarned is forearmed and commented:
    Once again, some signs that China is ‘softening’ on contovertial cases. Question is: is it a general policy or only for this year, the year of leadership change?


  2. I had great sympathy for this woman until I read that she is fighting for death penalties for all of the criminals. What the fuck? Even as a woman I can still say that this is too harsh, and driven by the same hideous human desires as those that made the men commit such crimes. It’s not an eye for an eye, it’s more like six heads for an eye. I would not like to see China’s legal system turn into the old Qin dynasty. This woman needs to reassess how inhumane she is being by demanding the lives of six men who took no lives. Just because your daughter’s raped and abused does not give you the right to everything.


    • The issue here is not whether the woman’s demands are justified, or whether you personally like them. However, she certainly has the human right to express her opinion and to not be punished for doing so. To send her to prison is the old Qin dynasty approach.


      • Yes obviously I’m not defending jailing her for expressing her opinion. Like you said I’m not talking about this “main issue.” I’m merely reflecting on the chilling demands she’s making and questioning the kind of hatred that led her to make such demands…this kind of mentality can be very dangerous…imagine everyone thinks like her, and the government, for example, does something bad, then the mob, using her reasoning, would feel justified to murder the entire local gov’t staff mercilessly just because they are the victims. So I think it’s unfortunate that this woman and her daughter became victims but I think she’s now being the bully by demanding death penalty for all when they didn’t even kill anyone (and that two were already sentenced to death).



  2. China to reform 1950s labour camp system, but won’t abolish « China Daily Mail
  3. Rights group urges China to repeal penalties against sex workers | China Daily Mail
  4. China: Tang Hui’s victory important in battle for democratic supervision | China Daily Mail

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: