Out of Order

Photograph for TIME by Ian Teh

Yang Shuxia's son, Zhu Yanqiang, has been in jail for over a decade, serving a death sentence on charges even China?s courts say are suspect

The police say her son was busy cutting a taxi driver's throat on the night of Aug. 16, 1994, but Yang Shuxia says she knows better. "He was right here lying down next to me with the tube running into his arm," she says, pointing to the kang, a traditional brick sleeping platform found in most farmers' homes in this part of northeastern China. Yang and other family members insist that then 21-year-old Zhu Yanqiang couldn't even get to the toilet without help, much less sneak out to join in the brutal robbery-murder that took place some 40 km...

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