(Minghui.org) Five Falun Gong practitioners in Yingtan City, Jiangxi Province, were sentenced to from two to four years in late December 2019. One practitioner’s son, who doesn’t practice Falun Gong, was sentenced to five years for buying office supplies for them.

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

Most of the practitioners were arrested in March 2019 in a campaign to “combat criminal gangs.” Instead of arresting real gang members, the police targeted Falun Gong practitioners.

Ms. Wei Qinglan was reported to the police for giving three young men information about Falun Gong on March 13, 2019. They followed Ms. Wei until the police came and arrested her.

At 11 a.m. the following day, the police arrested Ms. Xu Zhenhua and confiscated her computer, printer, and Falun Gong materials. In her garage, the police found a parcel that showed Ms. Li Yutai’s son as the recipient, which later led to their arrests.

The police interrogated Ms. Xu at Yingtan City Detention Center and attempted to force her to disclose information about other practitioners. Ms. Xu developed high blood pressure as a result of the stress and was taken to the police hospital.

Mr. Xia Zhuansheng was arrested and had his home ransacked around 2 p.m. on March 14. He was also detained in Yingtan City Detention Center.

Mr. Pan Shuicai was picked up and taken to Yujiang County Detention Center on March 27, 2019. The police claimed that he’d installed satellite dishes for people to receive uncensored news from overseas media. They returned to his home a few days later to confiscate his tools used to install the dishes. 

Mr. Pan’s legs severely swelled after he was abused at the detention center. His arrest came only one year after he was released from a three-year term for filing a criminal complaint against Jiang Zemin, the former head of the communist regime who ordered the persecution of Falun Gong in 1999.

After Mr. Hu Ming, Ms. Li Yutai’s son, was arrested on March 26, Ms. Li was forced to live away from home to avoid being arrested. In order to find her, the police arrested her daughter-in-law at the younger woman's own mother’s home in Yichun City, about 180 miles from Yingtan. The daughter-in-law's two young children and elderly, disabled mother knelt down in front of the police and begged them not to arrest her, but to no avail.

The police also went to Zhejiang Province, over 200 miles away, and arrested Ms. Li’s son-in-law. They threatened to arrest her younger son as well.

To prevent the police from further harassing her family members, Ms. Li turned herself in on June 18, 2019.

The police later submitted their cases against Ms. Li, her son Mr. Hu, Ms. Xu, Mr. Xia, Mr. Pan, and Ms. Wei to the Yujiang District Court, which then transferred the cases to Guixi City Court.

They all appeared in court on December 12, 2019, and were convicted weeks later.

Ms. Li was given three years and her son, Mr. Hu, was given five years. 

Ms. Xu was sentenced to four years.

Mr. Xia and Mr. Pan were each sentenced to three years and a few months (exact terms to be investigated).

Ms. Wei was given two years and a few months (exact term to be investigated).

The judge also fined each of them between 20,000 and 40,000 yuan.