(Minghui.org) Four residents in Yinan County, Shandong Province were recently sentenced to prison for seeking justice for a Falun Gong practitioner who died 13 days following her arrest.

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

The Yinan County Court announced the verdicts of the four Falun Gong practitioners on March 27, 2019, two months after they were tried in a makeshift courtroom at Hedong District Detention Center on January 24, 2019.

Mr. Zu Peiyong, 52, was sentenced to 3.5 years and fined 30,000 yuan.

Mr. Liu Naixun and his wife Ms. Wang Xilan, both in their 70s, were sentenced to 3 and 2 years, with 20,000 yuan and 10,000 yuan fine.

Ms. Li Changfang, 55, received 2.5 years with 10,000 yuan fine.

Yin Chuanwei, the presiding judge from Yinan County Court, attempted to block the practitioners from filing an appeal. Yin claimed that the practitioners weren't allowed to share their verdicts with others. He also demanded that their appeal couldn't be longer than 11 pages, otherwise it wouldn't be processed.

The four practitioners were arrested in August and October 2018 after being suspected of helping Ms. Xing Ximei's family to file a lawsuit against Yinan County Police Department. Ms. Xing died 13 days following her arrest on November 7, 2017, for not renouncing her faith.

According to an insider, the Linyi City 610 Office, an extra-judicial agency created specifically to persecute Falun Gong, ordered the practitioners’ arrests. The police followed and monitored the practitioners for days before arresting them.

The arrests of the four practitioners happened during the Chinese regime's campaign to crack down on gang members. Instead of targeting gang members, the authorities targeted Falun Gong practitioners to fill their quota.

Two supporters of Falun Gong, Mr. Wang Yonggang and Ms. Fu Wenhe, were also arrested for using banknotes printed with information about Falun Gong during the campaign. They were each sentenced to 1 year in prison with 1.5 years probation and fined 10,000 yuan in March.

Related reports:

Linyi City, Shandong Province: 34 Falun Gong Practitioners Still Incarcerated for Their Faith

Four Falun Gong Practitioners in Shandong Tried for Their Faith

Shandong Falun Gong Practitioners Targeted in Communist Regime's Gang Crackdown Campaign

Shandong Woman Dies 13 Days After Being Arrested for Her Faith