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Heilongjiang Woman Defends Her Innocence for Practicing Falun Gong During Court Hearing

Nov. 18, 2020 |   By a Minghui correspondent in Heilongjiang Province, China

(Minghui.org) A 62-year-old Jiamusi City, Heilongjiang Province, resident was tried by the Xiangyang District Court on October 27, 2020, for her faith in Falun Gong. Ms. Sun Yanhuan's lawyer entered a not guilty plea for her. The judge made two attempts to stop Ms. Sun from reading her defense script, but she insisted and finished it.

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

Ms. Sun pointed out that no law ever criminalizes Falun Gong in China and that the prosecutor failed to provide evidence to support the charge against her that she has undermined law enforcement.

“Which law have I undermined and how seriously was it undermined?” Ms. Sun asked the prosecutor, but he remained silent.

The prosecutor then accused Ms. Sun of having Falun Gong books at home. The judge also asked her, “Why do you still practice Falun Gong when you were already given a suspended sentence for it?”

Ms. Sun replied that it’s absolutely normal for a Falun Gong practitioner to have Falun Gong books at home as the Constitution protects one’s spiritual belief and freedom of speech. “If I hadn’t practiced Falun Gong, I might have already died. I practice Falun Gong to improve my health and be a good person. I didn’t intend to cause any trouble for society or undermine law enforcement. Instead, those who practice Falun Gong are turning society into a better place as we all strive to be a good person,” she said.

She went on to say, “If the Chinese courts convict one for following the universal principles of ‘Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance,’ it will confuse people’s judgment of good and bad. It’s telling the public that this country doesn’t allow one to be truthful, kind and tolerate, but encourages people to follow the Chinese Communist Party's deceit, malice, and struggle. If 'deceit, malice, and struggle' become prevalent in society, how can a society still maintain its stability?”

Ms. Sun listed examples of social problems, including fake food, drug abuse, and recycled oil, as the products of moral degeneration in society. “People stop at no evil in order to make money. The government officials are all corrupt. And prostitution becomes a fashion. Those who do good deeds and help the elderly are treated as fools and ridiculed by others. Who would feel good or peaceful living in such a society?”

She concluded that the Chinese culture believes that natural disasters are warnings or punishment from heaven for human’s corruption and wrongdoings. She urged all people attending the hearing to choose kindness and to not follow the Chinese Communist Party in doing evil.

Case Recap

Ms. Sun was first arrested on November 8, 2016, for trying to rescue detained Falun Gong practitioners. She had burning chest pain and a low-grade fever after months of detention. She was sentenced to three years by the Dongfeng District Court on October 18, 2017. As her condition kept getting worse, the detention center and local Jiamusi Intermediate Court decided to change her verdict to five years suspended sentence. She was released on November 27, 2017.

Not long after Ms. Sun returned home, she became paralyzed and had heart surgery.

After she was discharged from the hospital two months later, the local justice bureau contacted her and ordered her to attend a community correction program and write regular thought reports. Ms. Sun maintained that she didn’t violate any law and also, because she was still suffering from excruciating pain, she was unable to fulfill the requirements for her suspended sentence. The justice bureau officials threatened her and harassed her several times.

On July 31, 2019, a justice bureau official and several officers ransacked Ms. Sun’s home without a search warrant. All of her Falun Gong books, photo of Falun Gong’s founder, and some Falun Gong themed paintings, were confiscated. The officers carried her from the eighth floor downstairs and took her to the police station.

Although the police attempted to send Ms. Sun to the detention center, she was denied admission as she was still paralyzed. Then they released her on bail with a one-year limit and designated her younger brother as her guarantor.

Meanwhile, the appeals court revoked Ms. Sun’s suspended sentence and reinstated her original three-year sentence on October 11, 2019. She was ordered to serve time from October 11, 2019, to July 16, 2021.

Ms. Sun was taken back to the detention center on the day of the ruling, only to be turned down for admission due to her high blood pressure. After she was sent home, the local justice bureau ordered her brother to force her to take pills to bring her blood pressure down.

Ms. Sun was taken to the Xiangyang District Procuratorate on August 7, 2020, and told that the police were starting a new case against her, because she had committed another crime—possession of Falun Gong books. The police added that her not cooperating with the authorities during her suspended sentence was also part of her “new crime.”

The Xiangyang Procuratorate put her under house arrest on August 13 and she was informed by the Xiangyang District Court on October 22 that she was scheduled to appear in court five days later.

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