Prosecutor Admits Practicing Falun Gong Not a Crime
(Minghui.org) When Ms. Lin Xiaoyan and Ms. Liu Xinmei were tried for hanging up banners in public to expose the Chinese communist regime's persecution of Falun Gong, the prosecutor admitted that practicing Falun Gong breaks no laws. He then accused the defendants of “promoting Falun Gong,” but could not prove that they had committed a crime.
The court session ended without a verdict at Lishan District Court in Jinan, Shandong Province on February 3, 2015.
Lin Xiaoyan, a Falun Gong practitioner from Jinan City, Shandong Province, China
The practitioners were charged with “using a cult organization to undermine law enforcement,” a line routinely used by the state to sentence Falun Gong practitioners as part of the communist regime's suppression campaign. The prosecutor did not say which law enforcement agencies with which the practitioners had “interfered.”
The prosecutor also presented evidence taken from the practitioners' homes, which showed only that they practice Falun Gong. The prosecutor agreed that practicing Falun Gong is not against the law.
While defense arguments were presented, the court took each defendant outside several times to prevent each from hearing the other's testimony. The defense lawyers objected to this practice.
Threats From Authorities
During the trial, plainclothes officers surrounded Ms. Liu Xinmei's son-in-law. When Ms. Liu went home on bail after the trial, her son-in-law revealed that the police had threatened him. As a result, he threatened his wife with divorce if she continued supporting her mother's practice of Falun Gong. He then threatened his mother-in-law and his wife with a knife.
During the trial, Ms. Liu told the judge that police had forced her to sign a document against her will. Her lawyer was also threatened by several 610 Office agents immediately before the trial.
Unusual Security Measures
The morning before the trial, twenty police officers surrounded the courthouse. The trial was officially open to the public, but the court permitted only two family members of each practitioner to attend. Ms. Lin's daughter and cousin and Ms. Liu's son-in-law were allowed to enter the courtroom.
Plainclothes officers, some using their cellphones, occupied most of the seats in the courtroom. The family members' phones, however, had been taken away.
Ms. Lin Xiaoyan, Ms. Liu Xinmei, and two other practitioners hung up several banners in public places during the night of December 31, 2013. The banners read “Falun Dafa is good; Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good,” “Quit the Communist Party,” and “Bring Jiang Zemin to Justice.” They were captured on video by surveillance cameras and were all arrested on January 18, 2014.
The police twice tried to file a case against the practitioners but were rejected by the Procuractorate. Under orders from the provincial 610 Office, the police filed the case for a third time on November 21, 2014. On December 30, a prosecutor filed the case against Ms. Lin and Ms. Liu with Licheng District Court.