(Minghui.org) Three Falun Gong practitioners were tried by the Yushu City Court on November 8, 2016. This was the first hearing for Ms. Jiang Ping, and the second hearing for Ms. Li Yazhen and Ms. Li Yuzhang. They were denied the right to be represented by a lawyer in court. The trial started at 6:30 a.m. and lasted for only one hour and fifteen minutes.

Ms. Jiang was tried first. She told the court that practicing Falun Gong is not a crime and teaches people to be good. Freedom of religion is protected by the Chinese Constitution. However, Jiang Zemin, former head of the Chinese Communist Party, forbade people from practicing it. Ms. Jiang asked the court how Jiang Zemin's whims can supersede the Constitution.

When Ms. Li Yazhen was put on trial she was sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison. She told the court that she would appeal to a higher court.

Ms. Li Yuzhang was sentenced to three years in prison.

The families of the practitioners were only notified a day before the trial. They were told that only two family members were allowed to attend the hearing, but they had to obtain a letter from their local police station stating that they did not practice Falun Gong.

The three practitioners are being held in the Yushu City Detention Center.

Ms. Jiang was an employee of the Huancheng Credit Union of Yushu. Her workplace was ordered by the 610 Office to fire her for her belief in Falun Gong in September 2002. She was arrested for distributing Falun Gong informational materials on August 26, 2016.

Ms. Li Yazhen and Ms. Li Yuzhang were arrested for talking to people about the persecution of Falun Gong on January 29, 2016.

Related report:Two Yushu City Practitioners Tried Without Benefit of Attorney