(Minghui.org) A resident of Kunming City, Yunnan Province was sentenced to 3.5 years in prison for not renouncing her faith in Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.
Ms. Li Zhuxiu, 69, was arrested on February 27, 2019. The police never informed her family of her situation, and it took them months to find out on their own that she had been sent to Kunming City No.1 Detention Center following her arrest.
Ms. Li appeared in Yiliang County Court on July 30, 2019. According to her family who attended the hearing, she looked exhausted and was helped by a bailiff walking into the courtroom.
Her lawyer entered a not guilty plea for her.
Given her physical condition, her lawyer requested twice to remove her handcuffs and shackles, but was rejected.
Prosecutor Li Haibo accused Ms. Li of “undermining law enforcement with a cult organization,” the typical pretext used to frame and imprison Falun Gong practitioners.
Her lawyer argued that no law criminalizes Falun Gong in China and that the prosecutor failed to specify what law's enforcement was undermined by his client and how.
The lawyer also challenged the prosecutor for attempting to use her previous imprisonment for her faith as evidence to charge her again.
Ms. Li testified in her own defense and argued that she practices Falun Gong to improve her health, and didn't violate any law in upholding her faith. The judge interrupted her.
The judge announced her verdict of a 3.5-year prison term with a 5,000-yuan fine on August 30, 2019.
Because she refuses to renounce her faith that freed her from kidney stones and stomach problems, Ms. Li has already spent 1.5 years in a labor camp and 3 years in prison.