Wheelchair-Bound Beijing Airport Bomber Gets Six Years

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Gong Lei / Xinhua / AP

Ji Zhongxing attends his trial at the Beijing Chaoyang District People's Court in Beijing on Oct. 15, 2013

Chinese trials don’t tend to produce unexpected outcomes. But they do, on occasion, allow for out-of-court appeals by families and defense lawyers. On Oct. 15, Ji Zhongxing, a wheelchair-bound man who blew up a small incendiary device at the Beijing airport earlier this year, was sentenced to six years’ imprisonment for causing bodily harm through an explosion. After Tuesday’s sentence was handed down, Ji’s lawyer Liu Xiaoyuan, told Reuters that “during the trial, [the authorities] did not seek to find out the facts.”

The facts, as presented by Ji’s defense team, are certainly incendiary. Ji, 34, detonated the small bomb after fruitless years trying to gain justice for a brutal 2005 beating by men he said were officially linked security thugs. Ji was left paralyzed by the attack in southern Guangdong province. The airport explosion resulted in the amputation of Ji’s left hand but left no one else hurt, apart from a nearby police officer who sustained minor injuries. (Ji appeared at his two-hour-long September trial on a stretcher and told the court the bomb had gone off mistakenly.)

“We refuse to accept this [sentence],” said Ji Zhongji, the airport bomber’s brother, according to Reuters. “In Guangdong he was beaten and nobody did anything for eight years. Shouldn’t they investigate that?”

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