Saturday, June 15, 2013

Liu Xiaobo's Brother-In-Law Jailed for 11 Years: A Look at Baidu, Sina Weibo and Censorship

Images from a deleted
Sina Weibo post.
On Sunday, June 9, 2013 (the day before a three day national holiday in China), a Chinese court convicted Liu Hui (刘晖) of defrauding another man of 3 million yuan and sentenced him to 11 years imprisonment.

Liu Hui is the brother of Liu Xia (刘霞), wife of Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo (刘晓波).

On Christmas day, 2009, a Chinese court convicted Liu Xiaobo of inciting subversion of state power and sentenced him to 11 years imprisonment.

The screenshots below were taken on June 10 and show that a search for "Liu Xiaobo Liu Hui" (刘晓波 刘晖) returned only 10 results, and only from Xinhua, People's Daily, and (all operated by the central government and Communist Party). The same search on returned  dozens of results, and the first page of results included Radio France International, Deutsche Welle, BBC, and Wikipedia.

The screenshot to the right was taken in the morning of June 10, and shows that the top three search results for "Liu Hui" (刘晖) were the following:
Today (9th) a court on the outskirts of Beijing sentenced Liu Hui to 11 years imprisonment. Liu Xia, who had gone to the court to attend the sentencing, made a statement saying the sentence was political persecution, and was completely unacceptable. She condemned those involved to adding to the suppression of her family. In December last year, Liu Xia managed to avoid the surveillance of relevant agencies to visit the home of some friends, and its possible that the punishment of her brother Liu Hui was revenge for that incident.
Original URL: 
After a run to warm up I swam 500 meters, ate tablefull of stuff, watched TV news reports on Liu Hui and Liu Zhijun, hung out at OYC for a few hours~ and the result of completely relaxing my mind, I could only remember that I've got meetings with people every day this holiday, but I've completely forgotten with whom!
Original URL: 
Liu Hui was sentenced to 11 years, this dick [referring to Liu Zhijun] has to be sentenced to 1,100 years.
Original URL:
The screenshot below was taken in the afternoon of June 10, and shows that all three posts had been deleted, and none of the remaining results bears any relation to the sentencing of Liu Xiaobo's brother-in-law.

The screenshots were taken on the evenings of June 10 and June 11. On June 10 four of the top search results were once again about Liu Hui's sentencing (translated below). Within 24 hours those search results had been deleted, and once again there were no results relating to Liu Xiaobo's brother-in-law. 

While those over here talk about Internet security and human rights with Obama, after the talking's finished they then sentence Liu Xia to 11 years. Its clear for all to see that the Celestial Kingdom's power is growing.
Original URL:

#photo op# Liu Xia's brother Liu Hui, accused of fraud, sentenced to 11 years imprisonment by a court in Huairou, Beijing, denied his political rights for two years, fined 10,000 renminbi. Liu Xia, who had been permited to attend, criticized the case as political persecution, an illegal sentence, and completely unreasonable. Liu Hui's wife already said at the hearing he would appeal, and afterwards sat in the car and hid her face and cried.
Original URL: 
Liu Hui was tried for a dispute over a real estate transaction. On June 9, a court in Huairou, Beijing sentenced Liu Hui to 11 years imprisonment. His sister Liu Xia attended the hearing, and  Liu Xia said he would appeal. After the sentencing, Liu Xia told reporters, "this is an unreasonable verdict, and we can't accept it. . . ."
Original URL: 
A Beijing court sentenced Liu Hui to 11 years imprisonment and two years deprivation of political rights, and fined him 20,000 renminbi.
Original URL:
 On June 12, Liu Xia's lawyer, Shang Baojun, posted a letter on the Internet from Liu Xia to Xi Jinping in which she  said: "Mr Chairman, the 'Chinese dream' that you have proposed should be realized through every citizen. I hope the Chinese dream will not turn into a 'Chinese nightmare' for individuals like me." (主席先生,您提出的中国梦,是要靠通过每一个公民来实现的,我期待中国梦不会让我的这些个体变成“中国噩夢”).

These screenshots were taken on June 14, and show that Baidu searches for "Liu Xia" (刘霞) and "Open Letter" (公开信) return apparently uncensored results, but a search for "Liu Xia Open Letter" displays a notice saying "In accordance with relevant laws, regulations, and policies, some search results have not been displayed."(根据相关法律法规和政策,部分搜索结果未予显示。)