Once Imprisoned for Practicing Falun Gong, Retired Kindergarten Teacher Tried Again for Her Faith
(Minghui.org) A 66-year-old retired kindergarten teacher from Fengcheng City was arrested on the morning of May 30, 2018 when she was on the way home after buying some eggs at a market. The police said that someone had reported her for distributing Falun Gong informational materials to shoppers.
Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since July 1999.
When Ms. Liu Yinfeng, a Falun Gong practitioner, was detained at Hongqi Police Station. Officers went to her home and broke in through a window to retrieve the keys to open her door. With no one at home, they searched her house and confiscated her computer, printer, Falun Gong books, and related materials.
Ms. Liu was later transferred to Dandong Detention Center, where she went on two hunger strikes to resist the persecution. She started coughing, vomited blood, and was in a confused state.
Ms. Liu was tried on January 9, 2019. Her two lawyers defended her innocence, as no law in China criminalizes Falun Gong.
Ms. Liu was assisted into the courtroom on the morning of the trial.
The public prosecutor cited 1,000 copies of Falun Gong-related materials confiscated from Ms. Liu's home as evidence against her. Her lawyers requested to verify the evidence in court.
The presiding judge approved the request, and the lawyers picked up the materials and showed them to the judge and everyone else in the courtroom.
One lawyer opened a notebook that Ms. Liu used and showed it to the judge, saying, “Take a look, everyone. There's nothing in here.” The prosecutor had counted the blank notebook as one of the 1,000 items.
Among the materials were more notebooks and a stack of old copies of Minghui Weekly, a periodical containing information about the persecution of Falun Gong.
“Are these for your personal use?” asked the lawyer to Ms. Liu.
“It's for my own study, including those Falun Gong books. I need to study the books for my faith,” Ms. Liu responded. “Falun Gong has taught me to be a good person. After practicing, all my illnesses were cured, and I was given a second chance at life.”
Next, the lawyer took out the paintings that were previously hung in Ms. Liu's home and had Falun Gong messages on them. He told the judge, “All of these were hung in her home. The Constitution states that citizens have the right to freedom of religion.”
When Ms. Liu said that no one was at home when her home was searched, the lawyer said that it was illegal for the police to search her home first and give the search warrant later.
The lawyer also rebutted the prosecutor when the latter said that the person who reported Ms. Liu had burned the materials that he alleged were given to him by Ms. Liu without taking a look at them.
“There needs to be evidence when reporting someone. Why did he burn it? Without evidence, it's framing a person,” said the lawyer.
The lawyer presented a copy of Announcement 50, which was issued on March 1, 2011 by Director Liu Binjie of the General Administration of Press and Publication. The Administration had banned the publication of Falun Gong books in 1999, but Announcement 50 repealed the ban and made it lawful to own Falun Gong books.
Hearing this, the judge asked the lawyer for a copy of the announcement.
At the end of the trial, Ms. Liu’s lawyers requested her unconditional release. When the judge asked if Ms. Liu had anything to add, she said that it was wrong to persecute Falun Gong.
Ms. Liu had been repeatedly arrested for practicing Falun Gong. She was given three years of forced labor in 2002 and then three years in prison in 2008.
While imprisoned, Ms. Liu was held in solitary confinement, brutally beaten, and forcibly administered drugs, deprived of sleep, and forced to stand for long periods of time.
Parties involved in persecuting Ms. Liu:
Chen Zhihua, secretary of Fengcheng City Political and Legal Committee: +86-415-8122253
Ning Wei, president of Fengcheng Court: +86-415-2277777
Tang Jinfeng, deputy chief of Fengcheng Procuratorate: +86-158-41589501
(More participants in the persecution contact information is available in the original Chinese article.)