(Minghui.org) A Foshan City resident was sentenced to three years in prison for his faith, and the local appeals court ruled to uphold his conviction without holding a public hearing as requested.

Mr. Lin Xiaorui recovered from hyperthyroidism after he began to practice Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline being persecuted by the Chinese communist regime. A healthy body also enabled him to excel at work, and the techniques he developed to test cables are still being widely used today.

Mr. Lin was arrested on March 17, 2016 for telling people that more than 200,000 Falun Gong practitioners have filed criminal complaints against former Chinese dictator Jiang Zemin for initiating the persecution of Falun Gong.

Nanhai District Court tried him on July 11, 2016, and his lawyer entered a not guilty plea for him. The court later returned the case to Nanhai District Procuratorate, citing insufficient evidence. The procuratorate never supplied additional evidence as requested, but the court proceeded to sentence Mr. Lin to prison on April 25, 2017.

The court cited Mr. Lin’s prior arrest in 2002 as one of the justifications for his prison sentence. Mr. Lin once told a colleague about how he had regained health by practicing Falun Gong and lent her a copy of Zhuan Falun, the main text of Falun Gong. The colleague was reported to police for reading the book in her office. Police gave Mr. Lin 15 days of detention upon learning that the colleague got the book from him.

Mr. Lin filed an appeal after the conviction was announced. Neither his family nor his lawyer received any updates from Foshan Intermediate Court.

Mr. Lin’s lawyer tried to visit him on July 31, 2017 but was denied a meeting with him. His family then called the higher court to inquire about his case. Only then did the higher court reveal that they had ruled on June 26 to uphold his conviction.

The family was outraged that they had been kept in the dark all this time, but the higher court refused to provide an explanation.

The local detention center granted Mr. Lin a meeting with his family on August 7. He said that judge Chen Haiping of the appeals court came to question him at the detention center in June. Chen left after less than 10 minutes, and Mr. Lin thought Chen was preparing for an upcoming hearing in his appeal case. He was shocked to receive the higher court’s ruling days later.