Guizhou Woman Given Heavier Prison Term After the Procuratorate Backtracks on Its Own Sentence Recommendation
(Minghui.org) One month after a Guiyang City resident was sentenced to six months for distributing Falun Gong informational materials, the procuratorate that initially recommended the six-month prison term appealed against the verdict and proposed a much heavier sentence, from 3 to 7 years. She was eventually sentenced to three years in prison.
Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual practice that has been severely persecuted by the communist regime since 1999.
Ms. He Hua, 55, was arrested on December 1, 2017 while distributing materials to raise awareness about the persecution of Falun Gong.
Nanming District Procuratorate submitted her case to Nanming District Court on March 12, 2018. She appeared in court on April 16 and was given a six-month sentence with a 2,000 yuan fine.
While Ms. He was serving time at Yunyan District Detention Center, where she had been held since her arrest, Nanming District Procuratorate filed an appeal with the Guiyang City Intermediate Procuratorate on May 24, 2018 against the “light sentence.” They proposed a new sentence ranging from three to seven years.
At the procuratorate's request, Nanming District Court changed Ms. He's six-month prison sentence to one year of release on bail on June 11, 2018 [editors' note: according to Chinese criminal law, the accused may stay out on bail for up to a year]. She was released from the detention center that same day.
The police and staff from the residential committee constantly harassed Ms. He after she returned home. They said that she wasn't allowed to leave the city and had to report to the police whenever they requested.
Ms. He was summoned to Guiyang City Intermediate Procuratorate to answer some questions on August 12.
The Guiyang City Intermediate Procuratorate then forwarded her case to Guiyang City Intermediate Court, which summoned her for a court appearance on November 6.
The judge appointed a lawyer for her without her consent. No verdict was announced at the end of the hearing.
The intermediate court notified her to attend another court hearing on December 10 shortly afterwards. When she went there on that day, the staff members at the intermediate court changed their narrative and said it was the lower court who summoned her.
Ms. He went to Nanming District Court, only to be arrested in front of her family. The bailiffs pushed her into a police car and took her to Sanjiang Women's Detention Center.
She was sentenced to three years in prison by the intermediate court on December 23, 2018.
Twice Arrested in 2017
Ms. He was arrested on August 7, 2017 after the police saw her passing out informational materials about Falun Gong on surveillance footage.
She was transferred to Lannigou Brainwashing center after 15 days of detention and kept there for 65 days. Two staff members monitored her around the clock and forced her to renounce Falun Gong through intensive brainwashing each day.
She was released on October 27 after writing a statement renouncing her faith against her will. She was arrested again 37 days later.