Saturday, November 28, 2020

China's Police Jailing People Who Call Them "Dogs" Online

Article 2(1)(7) of the "Public Security Administrative Punishment Law of the People's Republic of China," provides that public security bureaus of the people's government at the level of county and above are responsible for public security administrative punishments within their administrative districts relating to disturbing public order, harming public security, infringements of personal and property rights, and harming public administration where there is social harm that does not rise to the level requiring criminal sanctions. 

Article 26 of the "Public Security Administrative Punishment Law of the People's Republic of China," provides that "other provocative acts" (其他寻衅滋事行为 - also translated as "picking quarrels and provoking troubles" and "disturbing the peace") may be punished by detention of between 5 and 10 days or a fine of no more than 500 yuan. Where the circumstances are severe, a punishment of between 10 and 15 days detention and a fine of no more than 1,000 yuan may be imposed.

Article 42(2) of the "Public Security Administrative Punishment Law of the People's Republic of China," provides that insult or fabrication of facts to defame a third party may be punished by detention of five days or less or a fine of no more than 500 yuan. Where the circumstances are severe, a punishment of between 5 and 10 days detention and a fine of no more than 500 yuan may be imposed.

Insult refers to words and actions that harm the reputation or personal dignity of a third party. Defamation refers to distorting and spreading falsehoods which harm the reputation or personal dignity of a third party.

Below are four examples from China's state sponsored media of people who were subjected to administrative detention for referring to police as "dogs" on social media platforms.

Lei Doe's Administrative Punishment

At about 2:00 pm on November 2, 2018, the police officer on duty at the Chengbei Police Station of the Public Security Bureau of Poyang received a call saying someone posted on the Internet that "Poyang traffic police bite and bark like mad dogs." The Chengbei Police Station identified the Internet user as Lei (female, 33 years old, from Poyang). Upon questioning, Lei confessed and was sentenced to administrative detention by the Poyang police.

Source: Netease - "A Woman in Poyang, Shangrao Vented her Anger online and was Detained for Insulting Traffic Policeman," [上饶鄱阳一女子网上泄愤,辱骂交警被拘留] November 6, 2018, https://dy.163.com/article/DVV36IBL0517V8NK.html

Zheng Doe's Administrative Punishment

On June 26, 2019, the Traffic Police Detachment of the Public Security Bureau of Guangfeng found in WeChat Moments that someone had taken a video of traffic police officer on duty, accompanied by voice and text insulting the officers on duty such as "Lots of wild dogs." After learning of the situation, the Traffic Police Detachment reported the situation to the police station in the jurisdiction. After an investigation, Zheng Doe was taken into custody. Under questioning Zheng Doe confessed to the fact that he had posted material insulting the police. On June 27, Zheng Doe was sentenced to administrative detention by the Public Security Bureau of Guangfeng for seven days on suspicion of disturbing the peace.

Source: Shangrao Evening News, "Guangfeng Man Detained for 7 days for WeChat Moments Video of Insulting Police" [广丰一男子在朋友圈发辱警言论视频被拘留7日] July 2, 2019, http://paper.srxww.com/srwb/page/34/2019-07-02/A03/74611562026953355.pdf

Xia Weifeng's Administrative Punishment

At 9:00 am on August 15, 2019, Xia Weifeng was fined 20 yuan and admonished by traffic police for driving without wearing a seat belt and not displaying a student driver sticker. On the morning of August 19, Xia sent his own photos of traffic police officers on duty accompanied by the insulting text "Do these dogs have reason to bite people every day" to WeChat Moments. This was forwarded by Internet users which aroused the attention of the Public Security Bureau of Shenqiu. The "Rights Defense Office" of the Bureau and the Traffic Police Department initiated investigation. On the afternoon of the same day, Xia was taken into custody and transferred to the Xiguan Police Station for investigation and was punished by the public security agency with 14 days of administrative detention for disturbing the peace.

Source: Sohu, "A Man in Shen Qiu Scolded the Police on WeChat Moments and was Administratively Detained 14 Days!" [沈丘一男子在微信朋友圈骂警察 被行政拘留14日!] https://www.sohu.com/a/335203992_120066352

Xi Doe's Administrative Punishment

On November 15, 2019, Xi Doe was ticketed by a traffic police officer for parking her car illegally. After seeing the ticket, she posted "They aren't police officers, they're police dogs" and other text insulting the police in WeChat Moments. Screenshots of her Moments were reposted in large numbers, attracting widespread attention from society, and creating a pernicious influence. Xi Doe was taken into custody following an investigation by the Shengli West Road Police Station, and was punished by the public security agency with 10 days of administrative detention and a 500 yuan fine.

Source: The Paper, "A Woman in Hengshui Insulted a Traffic in her WeChat Friends Circle Over a Parking Ticket, and Then . . . ," [衡水一女子因违章停车被“贴条”朋友圈辱骂交警,结果······] November 19, 2019, https://www.thepaper.cn/newsDetail_forward_4999904


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