Parents of Grace Chen

Mr. Yang Chen and Mrs. Zhimin Cao are Falun Gong practitioners from Hunan Province. The couple was detained by police on October 27, 2020 along with 19 other Falun Gong practitioners. Their teenage daughter Grace, who lives in New York, has been unable to contact them and lawyers have been pressured not to take their case. Chen and Cao have both been previously imprisoned for their faith. The Falun Dafa Information Center is requesting assistance in asking the Chinese government about their whereabouts and calling for their immediate release. (Last updated on February 17, 2023.)

(Pictured above (L) is mother Zhimin Cao with daughter Grace Chen in China, around 2010. (R) is a photo of Grace in New York, taken in December 2021.)

Case Summary

Yang Chen / 陈阳 – Gender: Male, Born: 1969

Zhimin Cao / 曹志敏 – Gender: Female, Born: 1974

Grace (Fayuan) Chen – Gender: Female, Born: February 10, 2005

Current status: Sentenced. According to their daughter, Grace Fayuan Chen, the extended family has been unable to reach the couple at the detention centers since their arrest. Lawyers hired by the family were pressured by their law firms or local Hunan justice bureaus to withdraw from the case, and were stonewalled from Liuyang Police Department and the Liuyang Procuratorate.

Reason for Detention: Chen and Cao were detained as part of a mass-arrest of 21 Falun Gong practitioners in Changsha, while studying the teachings (akin to Bible study).

Past Detentions: Mr. Chen was previously sentenced to 4 years of prison for his activism. He was severely beaten and tortured, including being force-fed with bamboo tubes and beaten with electric batons. In 2010, Mrs. Cao was abducted by authorities along with Grace after picking her up from elementary school. Both Cao and Grace were taken to a brainwashing facility for an unspecified amount of time.

Current location (Updated November 11, 2022): Mr. Chen is at Wangling Prison (网岭监狱). Mrs. Cao is currently imprisoned at Hunan Province Women’s Prison.

U.S. Family Residence: New York

Take Action

1. Share This Page on Social Media

2. Send a Letter to Congress

You can email or print this prewritten letter to urgently call upon members of Congress to press for the release of Mr. Yang Chen and Mrs. Zhimin Cao.

3. Send an encouraging letter directly to Grace’s parents

People who have survived Chinese prisons and escaped to the U.S. attest to the enormous difference it can make to hear from the outside world directly. It lifts the spirits of those wrongfully detained, and shocks local officials, making them wary of participating further in persecution.

You can send cards directly to Mrs. Zhimin Cao to this address:
Hunan Province Women’s Prison
No. 2 Mailbox, Changsha City,
Hunan Province, 410004

Send cards directly to Mr. Chen to this address:
Wangling Prison
Mailbox 502, You County, Hunan Province, 412037