I have never practiced Falun Gong, but both of my cousins are practitioners and they have been severely persecuted for a long period of time. I have never been able to understand this persecution. In April 2001, my cousin was sentenced to one year in a forced labor camp for practicing the Falun Gong exercises, and was later forced to leave his home to avoid arrest by the "610 Office" [An agency specifically created to persecuteáFalun Gong, with absolute power over each level of administration in the Party and all other political and judiciary systems]. In December 2002, I heard that in Binzhou City the "610 Office" arrested my cousin. On November 2, 2003, I was passing through Binzhou City and his family wanted me to visit him at the detention center. However, the detention center refused to let me see him. When I heard that the Beihu District court in Binzhou City would soon sentence him, I decided to stay and attend the hearing.

On November 3, 2003, though I found the courthouse, the guards would not let me in. Through the window, I saw ten people being sentenced -- five males and five females; among them was my cousin. Later I was told that this sentencing was kept a secret and even the practitioners' families and relatives were not notified.

The morning court hearing did not follow any proper procedures. The Falun Gong practitioners answered the prosecutor's questions with such good arguments that the prosecutor could not say anything back. I felt it was as if the practitioners were questioning the court, rather than the court questioning the practitioners. Even though my cousin and the other practitioners had been detained for long periods of time, they were still full of their usual vigor and energy. Due to the practitioners having such good defending arguments, the court could no longer continue questioning and declared that the hearing would resume in the afternoon.

Many people arrived in the afternoon and the court had to let the people in. All the seats in the courtroom were filled. I looked at these people. Each one was sitting upright and looking forward intently. The court started to read to a practitioner their so-called "crimes." This practitioner stood up and said that it was not true, that there were no such occurrences. Due to the fact that the practitioners were being sentenced unfairly, they started to recite aloud Zhuan Falun, the principal Falun Gong book. The police officers jumped up and yelled that they were ignoring the law and the courts. No matter how hard they yelled, they could not stop the practitioners. Therefore, a few police officers started to beat them in front of the public. One female police officer grabbed a practitioner's hair and viciously pulled her backwards, and used her other hand to cover the practitioner's mouth. The practitioner was not scared at all, and then the police officer slapped the practitioner on the face. Just as the police were being violent, two ladies on the sidelines yelled, "Do not hit people!" The police yelled back, "Who is hitting people?" The sound of the practitioners' reciting continued on, its echo inside the courthouse producing a majestic feeling.

When the police saw that they could not control the practitioners, they called in more forces, but to no avail. The people inside the courthouse were shocked and amazed at what was happening. Some people started to say, "Now I truly believe that Falun Gong people are admirable. Truly admirable."

The sounds of reciting continued until everyone left.

November 20, 2003