November 2021: 63 Falun Gong Practitioners Reported Sentenced for Faith
Sixty-three Falun Gong practitioners were confirmed sentenced for their faith in November 2021.
The 63 newly confirmed cases include one that took place in 2020, three in February 2021, two in July 2021, four in September 2021, 23 in October 2021, and 30 in November 2021. Due to strict censorship in China, the persecution cannot always be reported in a timely manner, nor is all the information readily available.
The sentenced practitioners hail from 33 cities in 17 provinces and municipalities. Shandong (10), Hebei (8), Liaoning (8) were the top three regions with the most cases. The remaining 14 regions reported between one and five cases.
The prison terms given to the practitioners ranged from 6 months to 10 years, with an average of three years and two months. Some practitioners who were given lengthy terms were also levied heavy fines. A Guizhou Province practitioner who was sentenced to ten years was fined 50,000 yuan by the court. He also had 80,000 yuan confiscated by the police when his home was ransacked. Another Guangdong Province resident who was given eight years was fined 80,000 yuan.
Sixteen of the sentenced practitioners were 60 or older, including those in their 70s and 80s. A 79-year-old practitioner was sentenced to four years.
Some practitioners were sentenced for sharing with people how Falun Gong cured their illnesses; some were convicted for raising awareness about the persecution; and one woman was imprisoned simply for having couplets bearing messages about Falun Gong on her door.
Below are snapshots of the cases reported in November 2021.
Five Tangshan City, Hebei Province residents were sentenced to prison on October 15, 2021 for practicing Falun Gong.
Ms. Geng Fuxia was sentenced to eight years with a 10,000 yuan fine.
Mr. Wei Guoshen was sentenced to three years and eight months with a 5,000 yuan fine.
Ms. Wang Xiuhong was sentenced to three years with a 3,000 yuan fine.
Ms. Fu Ruiying was sentenced to two years with a 3,000 yuan fine.
Ms. Lu Caiyun was sentenced to one year and five months with a 3,000 yuan fine.
The practitioners were arrested in a police sweep on June 18, 2020. Ms. Geng, Ms. Fu, and Mr. Wei were later released on bail due to health issues. Ms. Lu and Ms. Wang remain in custody in the Tangshan City No. 1 Detention Center.
During the hearing in the Zunhua Court on September 15, 2021, Mr. Wei testified that the police covered his head with a plastic bag filled with an unknown drug three times within a few hours. He almost suffocated from the fumes and couldn’t stop crying. Foggy-headed, he repeated what the police told him to say.
The prosecutor claimed that of the 18,400 yuan in cash confiscated from Mr. Wei, the police had returned 8,400 yuan, which Mr. Wei said he never received. The Liushahe Police Station officers intimidated him and searched his home again prior to the hearing. The police also forced him to sign and fingerprint document stating that the other 10,000 yuan would be confiscated as a fine imposed on him.
Financial Persecution by the Police
Mr. Huang Zhili, a Mengyin County, Shandong Province resident, was arrested at his rental apartment on December 18, 2020. The police confiscated the 170,000 yuan in cash he had prepared to buy a home and refused to return it. His son and parents-in-law were also arrested and briefly detained.
Mr. Huang has since been denied family visits. It’s recently reported that he was sentenced to three years in July 2021 and has been taken to the Shandong Province Prison.
This is the second time that Mr. Huang, a 48-year-old native of Xuzhou City, Jiangsu Province, has been sentenced for practicing Falun Gong.
Mr. Huang used to work at the technical department of a gypsum board factory and won a “10 Under 30” award. He lost his job after he was sentenced to three years in Wuxi Prison in Jiangsu Province following an arrest in April 2007. For refusing to do forced labor, he was held in a strict management team for 32 days in December 2009.
While he was serving time, his wife returned to her own parents’ home in Mengyin with their 8-year-old son. Mr. Huang also moved there after he was released. After the Xuzhou police found out, they chased him down in Mengyin and threatened to cancel his family’s household registration in order to force him to renounce Falun Gong.
Targeted for Speaking Out
A 73-year-old woman who credits Falun Gong for enabling her to stand up after being bedridden for two years, was arrested and later sentenced to 2.5 years for telling people about her miraculous recovery. Ms. Chen Huan was allowed to serve time at home, but was recently arrested again and has been held incommunicado since.
Ms. Chen, a native of Heilongjiang Province, suffered a stroke in 2006 and was bedridden for the next two years. The doctor issued several critical condition notices for her.
Ms. Chen’s younger daughter, who worked in Dalian City, Liaoning Province, took her to Dalian to care for her. In December 2008, Ms. Chen was introduced to Falun Gong by a local resident. After three days of practicing, she was able to get out of bed and cook for her daughter.
Deeply grateful for Falun Gong, Ms. Chen spent much effort sharing her story with people, hoping that more people could benefit from it. She was first arrested in December 2010 after being reported for distributing Falun Gong informational materials and held at the Wanli Police Station for two days. Only after she developed high blood pressure, did the police release her.
During the pandemic in 2020, Ms. Chen was reported again in May for distributing Falun Gong materials. She was arrested by officers from the same Wanli Police Station and released in the evening.
The police later submitted Ms. Chen’s case to the procuratorate, which then indicted her and moved her case to the Pulandian Court. Although the court ordered that she be taken back into custody in late 2020, Ms. Chen was released two days later because of her health.
The court ordered Ms. Chen’s arrest again in April 2021. She was held in a metal cage for three days and developed dangerously high blood pressure. A few days after she was released, the judge sentenced Ms. Chen to 2.5 years and allowed her to serve time at home.
The police monitored Ms. Chen’s daily life. She was seized by Zhang Junchi, an officer from the Wanli Police Station, outside her daughter’s home on August 16, 2021. She has been detained incommunicado since.
Ms. Wang Jiemei, a 60-year-old retired teacher in Fushun City, Liaoning Province, used to suffer severe cholecystitis and insomnia. As her husband also struggled with poor health, most of the house chores fell on her shoulders, leaving her constantly in a bad temper and easily irritated. Shortly after she took up Falun Gong, she regained her health. She was filled with energy and her mind was broadened.
After the coronavirus broke out in China, Ms. Wang felt compelled to share the healing power of Falun Gong to the public so that more people could benefit from it. For talking to people about Falun Gong in the nearby Shenyang City, she was reported on February 21, 2021, and arrested by officers of the Gaokan Police Station in Shenyang.
After nearly nine months at the Shenyang City No.1 Detention Center, Ms. Wang was tried by the Economic and Technological Development Zone Court at the detention center on October 11.
Prior to the hearing, the detention center demanded that her lawyer and family defender submit their travel history within the past 30 days, as well as support letters from their workplaces or residential committees to verify the travel history. As the lawyer had travelled out of town for other hearings, he was also required to submit a negative coronavirus test.
The hearing took place in substandard conditions, in a 100-square-foot visitation room with two rows of seats. Except for court clerk, who sat in a chair to type the court proceedings, the presiding judge, Yang Song, a juror and a bailiff all stood during the hearing. Wang’s family was also barred from attending the hearing, as they were unable to get a supporting letter from the community office.
Ms. Wang’s lawyer entered a not guilty plea for her. He said that it was unacceptable for the police to arrest her and detain her for over half a year only because she had said a few words to others.
As the prosecutor charged her with the standard pretext of “undermining law enforcement,” the lawyer asked how Ms. Wang allegedly undermined enforcement of the law and which law had been undermined.
The lawyer continued that the police had violated legal procedures while handling her case, including ransacking her home without a search warrant and putting down the wrong date of the arrest. He also asked the judge to summon the witness to appear in court and the prosecutor to exhibit the prosecution evidence for cross-examination.
The lawyer closed with the statement:
“For an elderly woman, she told strangers about Falun Gong and wished them to be safe, despite the cold weather and the pandemic. It completely came from her compassion and kindness. If you don’t believe what she says, at least you need to respect her. Even if you don’t respect her, you can just walk away. Why do you have to arrest her and detain her for such a long time?”
After the hearing, Ms. Wang’s family also tried to urge the judges not to take part in persecuting Falun Gong practitioners. The judges didn’t listen and recently sentenced Ms. Wang to 3.5 years with a 10,000-yuan fine.
Based on an original report from Minghui.org: