New Grandmother Remains Captive for Her Faith – Her Son Beaten and Sister-in-law Detained for Seeking Her Release
(Minghui.org) Ms. Zhan Zhongxiang wasn’t able to see her grandchild when her daughter-in-law gave birth recently, as the 56-year-old retired credit union employee has been detained for months for her faith in Falun Gong.
Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is an ancient spiritual and discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.
Ms. Zhan, Ms. Zhou Jun and her aunt Ms. Zhou Yuxiang, all residents of Pingdu City, Shandong Province, were arrested on September 24, 2019 at a farmer’s market and have been held in detention since.
The police submitted their cases to Pingdu Procuratorate on October 25. The prosecutor approved their arrests on October 30 and transferred their cases to Huangdao District Procuratorate on December 24.
Two other practitioners, Ms. Zhang Junying and Ms. Wang Zengmei, were also arrested on the same day. They have been released on October 31, 2019 and it’s not clear whether the authorities are pressing charges against them.
Ms. Zhan’s lawyer went to Pudong Detention Center to visit her on January 7, 2020. The guards first attempted to block his visitation citing a warning from the police, but later relented as the lawyer argued that it’s illegal for them to do so.
Ms. Zhan told her lawyer that the guards have been forcing her to take high blood pressure pills since her detention, even though she didn’t have hypertension.
Ms. Zhan’s husband passed away a few years ago. With her mother-in-law bedridden for years, her father-in-law suffered a stroke and also became bedridden after her arrest. Her own mother also suffers from poor health. And her sister-in-law has been in detention since October 2019, as the police retaliated against her for her efforts to seek justice for Ms. Zhan.
Family Targeted for Seeking Her Release
Ms. Zhan’s son and sister-in-law went to the police station to inquire on her case one day after her arrest. Her son was beaten by the officers and sustained severe injuries in his right eye and ribs. He also had bruises all over his body.
The police called Ms. Zhan's son, sister-in-law and nephew on October 22, 2019, telling them to report to Tonghe Police Station. Her sister-in-law went, only to be arrested at the police station and later sent to Pudong Detention Center, with the charge of “obstructing law enforcement.”
Ms. Zhan's son and nephew escaped arrest by not going to the police station, but they received more calls threatening to arrest them should they keep seeking her release.
Jia Shuhao, the deputy head of Renzhao Police Department, blamed Ms. Zhan’s family for submitting information to Minghui.org about their beating Ms. Zhan’s son. They threatened to keep Ms. Zhan’s sister-in-law in longer detention if they didn’t retract the information from Minghui.