Amnesty fears China plans to execute convicted spy

November 22nd, 2008 - 7:45 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, Nov 22 (DPA) Amnesty International Saturday said it feared China planned to execute a man convicted of spying for Taiwan and sentenced to death 18 months ago.A Beijing court this week asked the family of former medical scientist Wo Weihan to apply to visit him within seven days after denying them access for nearly four years, the London-based group said in a statement.

“This sudden move suggests that the Supreme People’s Court has approved the death sentence and that the Beijing Municipal Higher People’s Court is preparing to execute Wo Weihan,” the group said.

Wo, 59, was sentenced to death in May 2007 for spying after a closed trial, losing an appeal in February.

The court verdict said Wo was found guilty of spying for Taiwan “on a number of occasions,” such as sending information from scientific magazines and discussing the health of senior Chinese leaders, Amnesty said.

Wo was arrested in January 2005, and prosecutors said he confessed to the charges against him while in detention.

But Wo’s family said he confessed in the absence of a lawyer and that he later retracted the confession, it said.

Wo suffered a brain haemorrhage shortly after his arrest and has been held at a prison hospital since then.

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