Two Women Detained for Their Faith, Lawyer Not Allowed to Enter Not-guilty Plea
(Minghui.org) Two Changchun City, Jilin Province residents have been detained incommunicado for a year for their faith in Falun Gong, a mind-body practice that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999. One of their lawyers was threatened with license revocation should he enter a not guilty plea for his client.
Ms. Sheng Xiangmei and Ms. Wang Yingjun were arrested on June 23, 2019, after being reported by the Nanguan District Big Data Monitor Center for talking to people about Falun Gong. They have been denied family visits and subjected to mental and physical abuse while being held at the Changchun City No. 4 Detention Center.
In July 2019, the Nanguan District Procuratorate transferred their cases to the Chaoyang District Procuratorate, which was assigned to handle all Falun Gong cases in the region.
Ms. Sheng’s family hired a lawyer for her, only to be told by the authorities that the lawyer wasn’t allowed to enter a not guilty plea for her or represent her in court. Ms. Sheng's court-appointed lawyer was instructed to enter a guilty plea for her.
It’s not known whether both practitioners have been indicted or whether they are still facing trial by the Chaoyang District Court at the time of writing.