(Minghui.org) Three residents of Dalian City, Liaoning Province were sentenced to prison for raising awareness about the persecution of their faith in Falun Gong.

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.

Mr. Zhou Hongxu

Mr. Zhou Hongxu, 47, was arrested on June 15, 2018 after being reported for distributing informational materials about Falun Gong. The police ransacked his home and confiscated his Falun Gong books and related materials. He was taken to the Dalian City Detention Center the next day.

Mr. Zhou appeared in Shahekou District Court on November 5, 2018. Judge Yan Chenghuan did not inform his family of the hearing.

Mr. Zhou was sentenced to 3.5 years in prison and fined 10,000 yuan two months later. He appealed to the Dalian City Intermediate Court. 

Judge Yin Chuanmao at the appeals court promised Mr. Zhou that he would hold an open hearing of his case. But the hearing never took place. 

Mr. Zhou's family received a notice from the court on April 25, 2019 that his verdict had been upheld, and the judge didn't even talk to Mr. Zhou himself.

His family has vowed to continue seeking justice for him.

Mr. Zhou was taken to Xinrujian Prison on August 29, 2019.

Ms. Chen Guirong and Ms. Chen Lirong

Ms. Chen Guirong, 50, and her sister, Ms. Chen Lirong, 49, were arrested on July 29, 2018, also after being reported for distributing Falun Gong materials. 

The two sisters were sentenced to prison by the Wafangdian Court around May 2019, with Ms. Chen Guirong being sentenced to three years and her sister two years. They have appealed the verdicts with the Dalian City Intermediate Court.

Both women were taken to Liaoning Women's Prison on September 17, 2019.