The newly sentenced Beijing-based lawyer Gao Zhisheng said the judicial procedures for his case was fair.
"I believe the whole procedures including my arrest, litigation and trial are fair, " he said, adding, "During the whole process, I feel gratified with the rational practice of the police, the procurators and judges."
Gao made the remarks in an interview with media after his verdict was announced Friday. Gao was sentenced to three years in prison for subversion, with execution of the sentence being suspended for five years, and was deprived of his political rights for one year, which means he will not have to serve any of his sentence unless he is found guilty of another crime over the next five years.
Gao Zhisheng sincerely showed penitence for his crime during the court trial and pledged to return to society with a grateful and remorseful attitude, said sources with the No. 1 Intermediate People's Court of Beijing.
"What I did has caused harm to the (Communist) Party, the government and society as a whole," Gao told the court during the trial, as quoted by the court sources, adding no matter what the result was, "I will return to society with a grateful and remorseful heart."
Asked about whether he had been unable to hire a lawyer, Gao said he did express that he was not willing to hire a lawyer. He explained, "As the litigant, I was not willing to provide more for others to speculate; besides, I am a lawyer myself and I am experienced in defending in criminal cases."
"Though Gao insisted that he did not need a lawyer, the court appointed two lawyers for Gao to protect his rights and Gao agreed to accept the defence by the two lawyers," said Zheng Weiyang, the presiding judge for Gao's case.
The court had showed leniency in the form of a five-year reprieve as Gao "voluntarily reported other people's offenses and provided important clues to crack other cases" and admitted his crimes honestly, Zheng said.
Gao was accused of posting nine "seditious articles" on websites, the Beijing No.1 Intermediate People's Court said in a statement.
The court ruled that the articles defamed the Chinese central government and amounted to agitation aimed at toppling the government.
The court also decided that Gao had slandered the government and China's social system in ten interviews he conducted with overseas media.
Gao, born on April 20 of 1964, of Han nationality, was a lawyer with the Beijing Shengzhi law firm before he was arrested by police in August.