(TibetanReview.net, Aug24’19) – To China’s considerable embarrassment, the Interpol has taken the rare step of quashing its arrest warrant for a dissident Chinese apex court judge living in Toronto, Canada, saying the “red notice” was likely issued for political reasons and could undercut the organization’s neutral stance.
China had requested the notice in 2014 after charging Xie Weidong, 62, with accepting a bribe to favour one party in a civil dispute he adjudicated, reported nationalpost.com Aug 23.
However, the “Commission for the control of Interpol files” has ruled that there was evidence to back Xie’s contention that the whole prosecution was instituted for political reasons related to his outspoken criticism of the China’s legal system.
The report noted that Interpol’s governing constitution barred the law-enforcement network from making any intervention of “political … character”, saying it should abide by the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Keeping the red notice on file “would have significant adverse implications for the neutrality of the organization,” the commission’s decision was quoted as saying. “There is a significant potential … of the organization being perceived as facilitating politically motivated activities.”
Xie has alleged that Beijing had used various pressure tactics against him, including jailing his son and sister on trumped-up charges and torturing the chief witness in his prosecution into confessing.
His application for permanent resident status in Canada, based on marriage to a Canadian woman, was stated to have been rejected because of the red notice. But now it was being reassessed, the report added.
Xie had been a judge on the People’s Supreme Court, China’s highest judicial body, but resigned in 2000. He wound up in Canada in 2014. He now works as an Uber driver in Toronto’s Scarborough neighbourhood.
Xie alleged that he was targeted by Beijing when he failed to abide by government interventions in cases he heard. Then after leaving China he spoke out about problems in its legal system. In 2014, the Huanggang Municipal Public Security Bureau charged him with accepting a bribe of 1.4 million yuan — $262,000 at today’s exchange rate — to settle a 1999 civil case in favour of a particular company.
The commission has found that the main prosecution witness against Xie, a woman named You Ziqi, an official at one of the companies embroiled in the court dispute, had been tortured into making the bribery accusation. It also noted that she, now in jail, had since recanted her confession.