(Minghui.org) A 61-year-old woman was sentenced to six years for her faith in Falun Gong, an ancient spiritual and meditation discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese Communist Party since 1999. Ms. Xu Xiuyun has filed an appeal against the verdict.

Ms. Xu, of Fushun City, Liaoning Province, was arrested by two plainclothes officers at around 2 p.m. on September 21, 2019, when she was passing out information about how to break through the internet censorship in China. 

Ms. Xu appeared in the Dongzhou Court in August 2020 and was sentenced by judge Tian Hao. Judge Tian said he gave Ms. Xu a six-year term because she was a “repeat offender,” as her most recent arrest came less than five years after she had served 13 years for practicing Falun Gong. 

Eighteen years ago, Ms. Xu and another practitioner, Ms. Jin Shunnu, were arrested for distributing Falun Gong informational materials on April 6, 2002. Both of them were sentenced to 13 years in Liaoning Women’s Prison in November 2002 and released on April 5, 2015. 

One year before Ms. Xu’s latest arrest in 2019, Ms. Jin was arrested on September 19, 2018 for requesting documents to reinstate her suspended pension. While in custody, she slipped into a coma on October 6, 2018 and passed away four days later.