Updates on the case of the 13 political and human rights leaders at the higher court of appeal
1 August 2012
In the case of the 13 political and human rights leaders, the judge on 4 July 2012 decided to have a closed off informal hearing session for the defense witnesses. When the lawyers threatened to withdraw from the case, the judges decided to hold the hearing in the court, but in private. The judge then also issued a gag order on 14 July 2012 preventing all media from reporting on this case. As a result, the 13 political prisoners asked their lawyers to withdraw from the case.
On 14 July 2012 the court issued an order to assign new lawyers for the defendants. The defendants wrote a letter saying they refuse the assignment of new lawyers to them, as constitutionally speaking lawyers cannot represent a client without their consent. The next hearing on the 14 August 2012 is expected to be the verdict reading.