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Dad asks for Hangzhou 'arson' evidence

Time: 2017-12-28 12:11  From :HZResearch  Author:HZResearch
 

Lin Shengbin, who lost his wife and three children in a Hangzhou apartment fire allegedly started by their nanny, has called on authorities to reveal whether the fire department or property manager were at fault in the tragedy.

In an open letter released via Sina Weibo on Monday, Lin requested access to nine pieces of information, including the findings of a joint investigation by the Hangzhou and Zhejiang provincial fire bureaus.

Lin's wife, Zhu Xiaozhen, and their three children, ages 6, 8, and 11, died on June 22 when flames tore through their 18th-floor home. Mo Huanjing, who worked for the family as a nanny, is accused of starting the blaze.

The open letter echoes comments made online by Mo's lawyer, Dang Linshan, after the defendant's trial was suspended on Thursday. He said the police and prosecutors had ignored evidence of dereliction of duty by the fire department and property manager.

Dang, an attorney with Guangdong Thai Law Firm, walked out of the hearing after the court denied his attempt to have the case moved to another jurisdiction.

He said he had applied to the Supreme People's Court for help after finding that the evidence against his client was incomplete.

Police and prosecutors had accepted oral testimonies from only two of the 84 firefighters who took part in the rescue that day, and they were not among the first group to arrive at the scene, he said, while the court had also refused his request to invite 38 firefighters, security guards, neighbors and doctors to serve as witnesses.

Lin's attorney, Lin Jie, has supported Dang's call for a thorough investigation of the facts.

"We also hope the witnesses can appear at the hearing, and that the investigation can be more detailed," he wrote on Sina Weibo.

In his open letter to the Hangzhou fire bureau, which falls under the public security bureau, Lin Shengbin also requested to see written records, photos and videos from the fire scene to show how the rescue was carried out.

He also asked to see the evidence that shows the building had no proper fire safety management and that the firefighting equipment was not in working order at the time of the blaze, as was claimed by Chen Junhua, chief staff officer for the city fire bureau, according to Qianjiang Evening News on July 17.

"For example, Chen said the firefighting equipment-including water pumps, the water supply network and the fire hydrant pump adapter-weren't working properly and impeded the work of firefighters," Lin Shengbin said.

Zhu, Lin's wife, called emergency services at 5:05 am, and the fire was put out at 6:48 am, according to official records.

"We're waiting for authorities to reply to our letter," said Lin Jie, who added that the victims' family hopes the court will hear the case as soon as possible and has asked for the death penalty for Mo.

Dang told Beijing News that it is important in this case to discover the facts and any loopholes in property management and fire rescue, so as to promote social progress rather than just execute Mo and quell public anger.

The Guangdong Provincial Bureau of Justice said on Friday it will file an administrative punishment against Dang, saying he had violated court disciplines. The authority did not reveal what punishment he might receive.

"Until the announcement of a punishment, such as suspension, Dang will remain Mo's attorney according to the law," said Cheng Lei, an associate professor of law at Renmin University of China.

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