(Minghui.org) A retired teacher and a rickshaw driver recently appeared in the Yanqing District Court to face the same charge: they refused to renounce Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline being persecuted by the Chinese communist regime.

Ms. Zhao Guixiang faced the judge on the morning of June 26, 2018, while Mr. Wen Junqing was tried in the afternoon. They both testified in their own defense, as no law in China criminalizes Falun Gong.

Retired Teacher Arrested for Seeking Return of Confiscated I.D.

Ms. Zhao's I.D. had been confiscated a long time ago because she refused to renounce Falun Gong. As she needed the I.D. to process her retirement from Yanqing District Third Middle School, she went to the Xiadu Police Station on December 5, 2017, only to be arrested right there.

Ms. Zhao hired a lawyer, but the lawyer told her on March 20, 2018, that he had no choice but quit representing her. He had been threatened with license suspension for defending a Falun Gong practitioner.

Ms. Zhao's family was deceived by the local authorities and made to believe that they would give her a lighter sentence if she admitted “her guilt.” They found a lawyer to enter a guilty plea for her. Upon learning of this, Ms. Zhao asked her family to drop the lawyer.

She defended her innocence in court during the trial.

Rickshaw Driver Arrested

Mr. Wen, 47, used to work for a local tax bureau, but was forced to quit his job after the persecution of Falun Gong began in 1999. He subsequently became a rickshaw driver.

He was waiting for his next customer on October 19, 2017, when two officers arrived in a police cruiser to arrest him. Several more officers soon arrived and forced him to reveal his address. They proceeded to ransack his rental place while he was being held in the police car.

Mr. Wen explained in court whey he held firm to his faith. His lawyer entered a not-guilty plea for him and refuted evidence presented by prosecutor Liu Xueyan. Judge Li asked whether Mr. Wen admitted guilt, and he replied, “I am not guilty!”

Related Report:Rickshaw Driver in Beijing Arrested Again for His Faith