Reported in October 2022: 28 Falun Gong Practitioners Sentenced for Their Faith
Twenty-eight cases of Falun Gong practitioners being sentenced for their faith were reported in October 2022. Except two cases that took place in 2014 and 2021, respectively, the remaining 26 happened in 2022, including one in May and June each, six in July, two in August, and eight in September and October each.
Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999. Since then, countless practitioners have been arrested, detained, sentenced, and tortured for upholding their faith. But due to strict information censorship in China, the incidents can’t always be reported in a timely manner, nor is all the information readily available.
The sentenced cases were reported in nine provinces. Liaoning recorded the most cases of eight, followed by seven cases in Guangdong and four in Shandong. Henan and Sichuan had three and two cases respectively. The other four provinces each had one case.
The practitioners’ prison terms ranged from 1.5 to 10 years, with an average of 3.5 years. One practitioner was fined 5,000 yuan and three other practitioners were fined 10,000 yuan each. Among the 12 practitioners whose ages were known at the time of sentencing, they were between 38 and 86, including seven who were 65 or above.
Some of the sentenced practitioners had endured two decades of persecution before being convicted again. Some lost their lives in the persecution. The parents of a 16-year-old student were arrested shortly after she left China for New York to study music and both have been sentenced to unknown prison terms.
Below are snapshots of selected sentencing cases. The full list of sentenced practitioners can be downloaded here (PDF).
Mr. Mo Xinzhong
The 55-year-old Dezhou City, Shandong Province resident was sentenced to seven years for practicing Falun Gong. The local Liaocheng City Intermediate Court ordered a retrial after Mr. Mo Xinzhong’s first appeal, but the trial court still issued the same verdict after the retrial. He appealed again, only to be rejected the second time around.
Mr. Mo and his wife were arrested at their daughter’s bakery on the evening of February 9, 2020, after the police found Mr. Mo’s information while searching another practitioner’s home earlier. His two computers, three printers and over 20,000 yuan in cash were confiscated.
The police suspected that Mr. Mo had worked with other practitioners to travel from his residence in Xiajin County (under the jurisdiction of Dezhou City) to the nearby Gaotang County (under the jurisdiction of Liaocheng City), about 25 miles away, to put up informational materials about Falun Gong.
After three days of detention and interrogation, Mr. Mo was released on bail on February 12. Terrified by the raid and arrest, his wife fell ill and was hospitalized.
The police failed to show a search warrant before ransacking Mr. Mo’s home on the evening of February 9. Only after holding him at the police station overnight did they issue a detention certificate, which didn’t have a specific date of the arrest. The police then fabricated Mr. Mo’s deposition and forced him to sign it, without allowing him to read it first.
In addition, the police listed the paper currency confiscated from Mr. Mo’s home as Falun Gong flyers, because it had information about Falun Gong printed on it. The over 20,000-yuan cash confiscated from Mr. Mo, including bills of one yuan and ten yuan, were counted as 2,700 Falun Gong flyers.
Brother of Ms. Dong Xinhua of California
Mr. Dong Yiran, a 61-year-old former police engineer in Shenyang City, Liaoning Province, was arrested on February 24, 2022, while distributing informational materials about Falun Gong.
Mr. Dong was tried by the Yuhong District Court through a video hearing on August 4. He was represented by a court-appointed lawyer. The judge sentenced him to three years on August 7. After he was taken to the Shenyang City No. 2 Prison, the prison authorities barred his family from visiting him, sending daily necessities, or making cash deposits for him.
Mr. Dong’s sister, Ms. Dong Xinhua, who currently resides in Los Angeles, called for his release during a rally in front of the Chinese Consulate on July 18, 2022.
“My eldest brother Dong Xinran died from the torture in custody. My sisters were arrested and detained in brainwashing centers. Living in fear and under tremendous pressure due to the persecution of my siblings, my mother also passed away. My other brother Dong Yiran served two labor camp terms and a prison term for a total of 7.5 years. When he was released, the once strong and healthy middle-aged man had significantly aged. He was emaciated and gray-haired,” said Ms. Dong.
Parents of Grace Chen of New York
Mr. Chen Yang and his wife Ms. Cao Zhimin, of Changsha City, Hunan Province, were targeted in a police sweep on October 27, 2020, while studying Falun Gong books at another practitioner’s home. They stood trial at Liuyang City Court on December 21, 2021. Minghui.org recently confirmed that Mr. Chen has been taken to the Wangling Prison and Ms. Cao to the Hunan Province Women’s Prison. The lengths of their prison terms aren’t known.
The couple’s arrest came shortly after their daughter, Grace Fayuan Chen, 16, moved to New York to study music. She now lost financial support from the family and struggles to live on her own.
Mr. Chen, an engineer in his 50s, took up Falun Gong in 1995 and credits the practice for lessening his health problems, especially severe asthma, as well as purifying his mind. He met Ms. Cao at a Falun Gong exercise practice site in 1996. They later got married. Ms. Cao, who worked at the HR department of a state-owned car company, credits Falun Dafa for curing her severe eye condition.
Since the onset of the persecution, Mr. Chen and Ms. Cao were sentenced to four and three years, respectively, in 1999 for appealing for the right to practice Falun Gong. Mr. Chen endured horrendous torture in prison. Ms. Cao lost her job after she was released.
Ms. Cao was arrested again on July 5, 2010 with her daughter and held at a brainwashing center.
Based on an original Minghui article.