(Minghui.org) A woman in Shenyang City, Liaoning Province was sentenced to 4.5 years for her faith in Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) since 1999. After her appeal was turned down, her family filed complaints against the police officers, the prosecutors, and the judges involved in her prosecution. 

Ms. Liu Gangli

Ms. Liu Gangli, 56, was arrested on December 8, 2020. The Economic and Technological Development District Court sentenced her to a 4.5-year term with a fine of 10,000 yuan on August 10, 2021. After Ms. Liu appealed, the Shenyang Intermediate Court upheld the primary verdict on October 21. Ms. Liu and her family vowed to keep seeking justice and are considering filing a motion to reconsider her case.

Ms. Liu, who suffered from severe illness and was bedridden for two years, is grateful that Falun Gong helped her regain her health and live a fulfilling life. She also became a better person by following Falun Gong’s principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. However, while talking to people in 2014 about her positive experiences with Falun Gong, she was arrested and given a three-year prison term by the Shenhe Court. 

After Ms. Liu’s most recent arrest in December 2020, her family witnessed how the police, the procuratorate, and the courts violated the law in her arrest, indictment, and sentencing. Ms. Liu’s loved ones believe that the perpetrators have committed the crimes of dereliction, abuse of power, bending the law for selfish ends, as well as the illegal deprivation of citizens’ religious beliefs. 

In seeking justice, Ms. Liu’s family has filed criminal complaints against key perpetrators with the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, the Discipline Inspection and Supervision Committee, and the National Public Complaints and Proposals Administration. 

Below is the content of the criminal complaint. 

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Plaintiff: Family members of Ms. Liu Gangli


Sun Hongliang (孙宏亮): male, deputy chief of the Qilu Police Station in Shenyang City, Police ID 107819, phone numbers are +86-24-25728614 and 17702497889 ©

Peng Jiaxing (彭佳星): male, officer with the Qilu Police Station, Police ID 107739, phone numbers +86-24-25728614, +86-15640551298 ©

Lu Hong (吕虹): female, prosecutor for the Shenyang Economic and Technological Development District Procuratorate, phone number +86-24-25182820

Wang Min (王敏): female, officer with the Shenyang Economic and Technological Development District Procuratorate, phone number +86-24-25182820

Yang Song (杨松), female, judge, Shenyang Economic and Technological Development District Court, phone number +86-24-85819913

Liu Dayong (刘大勇): male, presiding judge for the Shenyang City Intermediate Court, phone numbers +86-24-22763664, +86-15940569366 ©

Song Yongzheng (宋永政): male, judge, Shenyang City Intermediate Court: phone number +86-24-22763668


To investigate the accused for their crimes of illegal detention, illegal search, illegal trespassing, libel, illegal deprivation of citizens’ religious beliefs, robbery, perjury, dereliction, abuse of power, bending the law for selfish ends, and so on. 

To release Ms. Liu Gangli unconditionally based on the law. 

Facts and Reasons

While shopping with her daughter on February 2, 2020, Ms. Liu Gangli handed out some materials on how Falun Gong helps people stay safe and healthy during the pandemic. Both she and her daughter were arrested on their way back home. Her daughter was released at around midnight and Ms. Liu was released on 5,000-yuan bail the next afternoon after she was found to have high blood pressure. 

About four hours later, the police arrested her again and held her at the Qilu Police Station overnight. She was taken to the Shenyang City Detention Center a day later after passing the physical examination. 

Upon finding out that she had attended several family gatherings during the Chinese New Year in late January, the detention center decided not to accept her, citing concerns that she potentially carried the coronavirus. Ms. Liu returned home at around 1:00 a.m. on February 5.

The police lifted Ms. Liu’s bail condition in June 2020 and returned her 5,000-yuan bond. A month later, they submitted her case to the Economic and Technological Development District Procuratorate.

Sun Hongliang, deputy chief of the Qilu Police Station, called Ms. Liu on November 2, and ordered her to report to the police station on a regular basis, or they would arrest her. Ms. Liu was then arrested again on December 8, 2020 and admitted to the Shenyang City Detention Center the next day. She has been held there since.

When Ms. Liu’s family questioned Sun about her arrest, Sun claimed that it was because she distributed materials in February 2020 and the arrest was ordered by the Procuratorate. But when Ms. Liu’s family called the Procuratorate to inquire about her case, they were given the run-around between the prosecutor and the police.

Ms. Liu stood trial at the detention center on May 13 and July 19, 2021, and was sentenced to 4.5 years with a 10,000-yuan fine on August 10. She appealed with the Shenyang City Intermediate Court, which announced on October 21 that they were upholding the primary verdict.

Below are details on how the accused violated the law. 

Arrest and Detention

The police were involved in numerous unlawful behaviors when filing the case and handling the case. In addition, they were suspected of illegal searches, illegal intrusion into a private residence, robbery, and the crime of bending the law for selfish ends. In addition, before arresting Ms. Liu, the police arrested her younger brother, traumatizing a man with a physical disability.

Ms. Liu’s younger brother said he went to Ms. Liu’s home for lunch on December 8, 2020. As soon as he arrived at the entrance of her apartment building, a group of plainclothes officers surrounded him and dragged him to a police car. They snatched his bag, searched him, and confiscated his cellphone and a spare key to Ms. Liu’s apartment. 

After taking him to the Qilu Police Station, the police also took away his watch. When he asked for it back, an officer threatened him not to move, while holding an electric baton in his hand. They also forbade him from calling his family and forced him to reveal the password of his phone, threatening to electrocute him. 

With the key snatched from Mr. Liu, the police entered Ms. Liu’s home, arrested her, and confiscated three cell phones along with other personal belongings. No officer ever showed their ID or a search warrant during the raid. Ms. Liu’s brother was released after being held at the police station for over one hour. For the next several days, he returned to the police station and questioned the police as to why they arrested him. 

Deputy chief Sun, who led the arrest, said that he couldn’t reveal who ordered the arrest. As Ms. Liu’s brother pressed the issue, Sun said that it was the communist regime’s current leader Xi Jinping that ordered the arrest.

The arrest deeply traumatized Ms. Liu’s brother, who has a disability. He struggled to cope and was unable to live a normal life for months.

Ms. Liu’s husband picked up her detention notice at the police station a few days later. The notice stated that she was detained on charges of “undermining law enforcement with a cult organization” and the detention started at 7 p.m. on December 9. The police chief didn’t sign the notice as required by law.

During this process, the police made the arrest first, followed by seeking evidence to justify their arrest. Not only was the arrest and search unlawful, their filing of a criminal case against Ms. Liu also failed to follow legal procedure. The detention of Ms. Liu and her brother was also illegal.

In summary, Sun Hongliang and Peng Jiaxing were suspected of violating the following articles of China’s Criminal Law: illegal detention (Article 238), illegal search and illegal intrusion (Article 245), defamation (Article 246), deprivation of religious freedom (Article 251), robbery (Article 263), abusing power and neglecting duty (Article 397), and bending the law for selfish ends (Article 399).


The Domestic Security Division of the Shenyang Police Department issued a “determination opinion” to “determine” that the Falun Gong materials confiscated from Ms. Liu were “cult propaganda” that “broke the law.” Her family argued that the “determination opinion” was illegal and should never have been admitted as prosecution evidence against her. The police were also suspected of perjury because of the reasons below. 

First, Article 50 of the Criminal Procedure Law listed 8 types of materials that can be used as prosecution evidence, including (1) physical evidence; (2) documentary evidence; (3) witness testimony; (4) victim statements; (5) the suspect or defendant's statements or explanations; (6) evaluation opinions; (7) records such as those from examination, inspection, identification, and investigation experiments; (8) audio or visual materials and electronic data.

The police-issued “determination opinion” was not on the list. The closest one might be “evaluation opinions,” which require strict certification of the evaluating agency and professionals. Plus, an “evaluation opinion” is not valid unless it is signed. In contrast, the Domestic Security Division of the Shenyang Police Department was not registered at the judicial system and thus cannot be considered a qualified evaluating agency. In fact, Measures for the Administration of the Registration of Judicial Authenticators issued by the Ministry of Justice in September 2005 stated that a judicial authenticator must meet the requirements and obtain the Judicial Authenticator’s Practice License. Moreover, none of the cult lists issued by the regime list Falun Gong. Therefore, no evaluating agency or professional can label Falun Gong materials as cult propaganda. 

Second, the police department is an investigative agency responsible for arresting suspects, not prosecuting them. In Ms. Liu’s case, the police department also “determined” that she committed a crime, essentially turning the Procuratorate and the court into puppet agencies. 

Third, the “determination opinion” issued by the Domestic Security Division cited as legal basis the “Interpretation on Criminal Cases such as those of Organizing or Exploiting Cults to Undermine The Implementation of Law,” which was issued by the Supreme People’s Court and Supreme People’s Procuratorate in 2017. With no endorsement from the Ministry of Public Security, the interpretation could only offer judicial interpretations instead of granting power to another government agency to determine a suspect’s criminality. Furthermore, its Article 15 on determination opinion has violated the Chinese Legislation Law by granting authority to city-level police departments. 

Fourth, the Ministry of Public Security and the CCP’s Central Committee General Office each published a list of 7 cult organizations on April 9, 2000, with 14 in total. Falun Gong is not on either list. By failing to refer to the lists, the Interpretation in 2017 is instigating police departments to persecute Falun Gong practitioners, making the former perpetrators who will bear consequences for harming law-abiding practitioners. 

Illegal Activities of Procuratorate Officials

The prosecutors involved in the case illegally approved the arrest and illegally indicted Ms. Liu. By doing so, they are suspected of abuse of power and the crime of bending the law for selfish ends. 

For example, prosecutor Lu Hong of the Shenyang Economic and Technological Development District Procuratorate approved the criminal arrest on December 22, 2020, two weeks after Ms. Liu was detained. Her family believes that Lu knew that Falun Gong is not on the list of 14 cults, and that Announcement 50 from the China Administration of Press and Publication lifted its ban on the publication of Falun Gong books in 2011. As such, Lu should have known that Ms. Liu broke no law by possessing and distributing Falun Gong books and related materials. 

Ms. Liu’s family thus accused Lu of committing the crime of dereliction of duty, the crime of libel, and the crime of depriving a citizen of his or her freedom of religious belief. More specifically, Lu violated the following articles of Chinese Criminal Law: defamation (Article 246), deprivation of religious freedom (Article 251), abusing power and neglecting duty (Article 397), and bending the law for selfish ends (Article 399).

In addition, prosecutors have the obligation to hear input from defendants and family defenders. But when Ms. Liu’s family defenders tried to contact prosecutor Wang Min, who was in charge of her case, Wang refused to meet with them or accept additional evidence supporting her innocence or their letters seeking dismissal of her case. 

Without informing her family, Wang indicted Ms. Liu and moved her case to the Economic and Technological Development District Court. After the first trial, Wang provided more documents against Ms. Liu, leading to the appeals court rejecting her appeal. 

By creating unjust, false, and wrong cases, Wang also violated the law. Ms. Liu’s family believes Wang committed exactly the same crimes as prosecutor Lu mentioned above. 

Allegations Against Trial Court Judge Yang Song

Ms. Liu’s family accused judge Yang Song, who sentenced her to prison, of committing the crimes of dereliction of duty and bending the law for selfish ends. 

First, Ms. Liu was sentenced for violating Article 300 of the Criminal Law, which states that “Whoever forms or uses superstitious sects or secret societies or weird religious organizations or uses superstition to undermine the implementation of the laws and administrative rules and regulations of the State should be prosecuted to the fullest extent possible.” But none of the prosecution evidence indicated in the verdict supported the charges against Ms. Liu. There was no mention of which cult organization Ms. Liu was involved in to undermine the implementation of which law or cause damage to which individuals. As such, the guilty sentence against her was invalid. 

Second, judge Yang cited the wrong law, namely, Article 300 of the criminal law, the reason being that Article 300 was about punishment regarding cult organizations but that Falun Gong was not on the lists of 14 cult organizations published by the Ministry of Public Security and the CCP’s Central Committee General Office as mentioned earlier in the complaint. Moreover, the Legal Evening News reprinted the lists on June 2, 2014, four years after the publication of the lists. It again underscores that Falun Gong is not a cult. 

The experiences of Ms. Liu and numerous other Falun Gong practitioners have attested to the great benefits of the practice. Because of uterine cancer, Ms. Liu was forced to stay in bed for two years. The practice of Falun Gong not only cured her illness but also made her a better person. She stopped smoking and drinking and mended her strained relationship with her mother-in-law. In summary, Falun Gong is a mind-body practice that only benefits its learners without causing harm to anyone or to society. 

Third, Falun Gong books and materials are lawful possessions of practitioners and should not be used as prosecution evidence against them. As mentioned above, the ban on Falun Gong books was lifted in 2011 by the China Administration of Press and Publication. 

Fourth, the verdict cited the Supreme Court and Supreme Procuratorate’s Interpretation of Article 300 of the Criminal Law mentioned earlier in the complaint. However, the two agencies are not law-making bodies in China. Whatever interpretations they make cannot be used as legal basis to criminalize anyone. 

Even if the interpretation could be used as a legal basis, it has failed to state clearly under what circumstances would a suspect be considered to have used a cult organization to undermine law enforcement. 

Additionally, the interpretation is invalid since it has violated the Chinese Constitution and China’s Legislation Law. Article 3 of Criminal Law states, “For acts that are explicitly defined as criminal acts in law, the offenders shall be convicted and punished in accordance with law; otherwise, they shall not be convicted or punished.” Since Ms. Liu had never committed any criminal acts, she should not have been convicted for non-crimes. 

Therefore, judge Yang violated the Criminal Law by abusing power and neglecting duty (Article 397), and bending the law for selfish ends (Article 399).

Allegations Against Appeals Court Judges

After Ms. Liu was sentenced, her family submitted various documents to the Shenyang City Intermediate Court, detailing how the police, the procuratorate, and the trial court violated the law in handling her case. They requested judges Liu Dayong and Song Yongzheng of the appeals court to uphold justice for Ms. Liu and acquit her.

Both judges ignored the requests and claimed that there was no precedent for Falun Gong practitioners being acquitted. At the same time, they kept pressuring her family defender to submit the defense statement as soon as possible so as to complete the required prosecution steps to close the case.

The two judges ruled to uphold the original verdict on October 21, claiming that the trial court had followed appropriate legal procedures and cited appropriate laws to give an appropriate sentence against Ms. Liu. Her family believes that the two judges committed the crimes of dereliction of duty and bending the law for selfish ends, just as the other defendants in their complaint. 

On November 4, 2009, the Supreme Court issued a notice on how verdicts should cite applicable laws and regulations. Ms. Liu’s family reiterated at the end of their complaint that both the trial court and the appeals court judges failed to cite any applicable law in her conviction. They all cited Article 300 of the Criminal Law, but no law in China has ever labeled Falun Gong a cult, rendering Article 300 an inapplicable law in the case.

Related reports:

Liaoning Woman Sentenced to 4.5 Years for Her Faith

Once Imprisoned for Three Years, Liaoning Woman Again Faces Indictment for Her Faith

Practitioner Ms. Liu Gangli Not Allowed to Meet with Attorney

Imprisoned for Her Faith, Liaoning Woman Faces Constant Abuse