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Copyright 1998 Agence France Presse  
Agence France Presse

July 29, 1998 04:59 GMT

SECTION: International news

LENGTH: 194 words

HEADLINE: China charges man with Internet subversion: report


   A Shanghai businessman faced subversion-linked charges for e-mailing information to overseas dissidents, a Hong Kong-based human rights groups said Wednesday.

Software company manager Lin Hai would be tried soon in the Shanghai Intermediate Court with providing "Da Cankao" magazine with 30,000 e-mail addresses, the Information Centre of Human Rights and Democracy Movement in China said in a fax statement.

"Da Cankao" is an on-line magazine run by US-based dissidents.

Lin, 30, who runs Shanghai Zhengfang Software Co., was detained on March 25 and formally arrested on April 30, the statement said.

While Chinese authorities have often harassed dissidents who used the Internet to further their cause, the case is the first known example of charges against an individual for political Internet use.

The rights group said Lin had hired a lawyer to defend him against the charges of "instigation to subversion of the state's power."

Centre founder Lu Siqing told AFP that Lin had no previous known connections to China's pro-democracy movement.

If found guilty, Lin faced a minimum 10-year sentence under Chinese law, Lu said.



LOAD-DATE: August 12, 1998

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