(Minghui.org) A 53-year-old man from Shenyang City was sentenced to 4.5 years in prison and fined 10,000 yuan for refusing to renounce Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline being persecuted by the Chinese communist regime. His mother has vowed to appeal for his right to freedom of belief.

Mr. Li Hongwei was arrested and had his home ransacked on June 26 of this year. The arresting officers beat him savagely as he struggled to get away. There were blood stains in his apartment after his arrest. The police, however, claimed Mr. Li had injured himself during an accident.

Mr. Li went on a hunger strike at Hunnan Detention Center to protest the illegal detention, only to be taken to a local hospital for force-feeding on July 13. Two uniformed and three plainclothes officers were present, and they beat him and slapped him in the face when he protested against the mistreatment.

Hunnan District Court tried Mr. Li on August 3 and delivered its verdict against him two weeks later.

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