(Minghui.org) After Ms. Zhang Wenci’s family finally found out that she had been sentenced to three years for practicing Falun Gong, the authorities refused to reveal where she was being held.

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. Zhang, a 74-year-old Tianjin resident, was arrested at home by a dozen officers on the evening of September 10, 2019. Her home was also ransacked.

After a year of detention at Hongqiao Detention Center, Ms. Zhang was scheduled to appear in court on September 28, 2020. But when her family went to the court that day, the courtroom was empty. They later found out that as some witnesses refused to testify in court, the judge had sent her case back to the Hongqiao Procuratorate for the prosecutor to collect more evidence against her.

The Hongqiao District Court held a secret trial of Ms. Zhang on December 27, 2020. Her family wasn’t allowed to attend the hearing. Only after their persistent inquiries did a court-appointed lawyer tell them that Ms. Zhang had been sentenced to three years.

With the 2021 Chinese New Year approaching, Ms. Zhang’s family wanted to deposit money for her. But the authorities refused to tell them whether she was still held in the detention center or had been transferred to prison.