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75-Year-old Physician Sentenced to 3.5-Year Imprisonment for Telling Others About Falun Gong

December 16, 2018 |   By a Minghui correspondent in Chongqing

(Minghui.org) Ms. Tang Tianzhen, a retired ob-gyn physician in Chongqing City, was arrested on June 6, 2018, for talking to people about the Chinese communist regime's persecution of Falun Gong, a mind-body cultivation practice based on the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.

Her family didn't know her whereabouts until August 22, when they received a phone call from Longyan Detention Center. When they went to the detention center on November 5, they were told she had been put on trial on October 25. When they returned on December 6, they were told she had been sent to Chongqing Women's Prison the day before to serve three and a half years.

As the family was never given updates on Ms. Tang's case or allowed to see her in the detention center, they had no idea of what she went through during her detention, trial, or sentencing. They overheard that she had been ill at the detention center and was forced to take unknown medication every day. They then visited local government agencies in Jiulongpo District trying to find more information about her case and seek her release, but their efforts all ended in vain.

Ms. Tang has been arrested multiple times since July 1999, when the persecution of Falun Gong began. She was held at a labor camp for 14 months following her arrest on July 8, 2000. Not long after her release, she was arrested again on September 29, 2001, and detained at two different brainwashing centers for a total of 15 months.

She was later arrested on July 6, 2010, and sentenced to eight months in prison.

Between 2011 and 2014, Ms. Tang was arrested a few more times and briefly detained each time.

Her latest arrest and imprisonment were preceded by a series of harassment and arrests that started in 2017. She was arrested on May 28, 2017, for telling others about Falun Gong. Though she was released after one day of detention, she was taken back into custody four months later, on November 6. Officers had planned to send her to Huayan Detention Center, but they relented after she was rejected by the center due to high blood pressure.

The police submitted her case to the local procuratorate, which twice returned the case, citing insufficient evidence. The police tried a third time and secured her indictment on January 11, 2018.

On January 31, two officers from Xietaizi Police Station appeared at her home and said the Jiulongpo Court had charged her. She was taken to the court to sign some documents. She said she would defend herself when asked if she wanted to hire a lawyer.

A man knocked on the door of Ms. Tan's home on February 26. He pretended to be delivering goods to a certain home. He left when Ms. Tan said her home wasn't the one he said he was looking for. Two men and one woman came two hours later and claimed to be police delivering a court summons. Ms. Tan suspected they might be of the same group of people as the man who came in the morning and tried to spy on her. She refused to open the door, and they left.

The police eventually arrested Ms. Tan while she was grocery shopping on the morning of June 6.

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