The man, identified as wheelchair-bound Zou Bin, is severely handicapped and had to use body language to communicate throughout the hearing, having lost his ability to talk to illness. It was alleged that Zou has been detained by authorities for the past 7 months, for defending his mother against a group of men who broke into her apartment building, and who after being refused entry to the apartment, waited for her outside and savagely beat her. Zou is accused of using a kitchen knife to defend his mother, killing one attacker and injuring another in the fray.
On the same day as the case against Mr. Zou, nearly a thousand angry residents rallied to protest a mass forced eviction in Wuhan's Qiaoku district, carrying banners reading 'Return My Home to me' and 'Stop Violating our Residency Rights', as well as propane tanks to ward off police forces, who were later accused by government agents of not doing enough to 'protect the interests of the party'.
According to a report from The Epoch Times, the evictions were the result of Wuhan City Party Committee Secretary Ruan Chengfa handing over a development project to the relatives of an old friend who had helped him obtain his position as Secretary, with residents being evicted without official documentation.
The demonstrations highlight the sensitivity of local populations toward forced evictions across China by the government, with the charges against Zou in particular appearing to have struck a raw nerve among a people who have simply had enough of being pushed around by a corrupt and authoritarian system, and of having their homes and livelihoods demolished while they stand by powerless to act.
The Chinese Communist government has increasingly aggravated the population and stirred resentment with rampant corruption, forced evictions, and demolitions for which it offers inadequate compensation and options for resettlement in urban centres where rural-dwellers have difficulties finding work. Recently a young man created a 'Blood Map' using Google Maps pinpointing locations of thousands of incidences of unrest and demonstrations across the country.
To avoid associating the case against Zou Bin with such forced evictions and demolitions, the Wuhan Procuratorate allegedly used the euphemisms 'relocating' and 'renting'.
No verdict was reached on the 15th March in regards to Mr. Zou, and his lawyer, Mr. Liu, claimed that there was not enough evidence against him for prosecutors to justify a conviction.