(Minghui.org)Mr. Liao Zhijun, from Chenzhou City, Hunan Province, was arrested on May 28, 2017, while distributing informational flyers about Falun Gong. He was tried on February 2, 2018, by theSuxian District Court. No verdict was announced.

Imprisoned Nine Years for Practicing Falun Gong

Mr. Liao used to work at the train inspection and repair center in Chenzhou City, Hunan Province. After he began practicing Falun Gong in 1996, he followed the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance to improve himself. He learned to think of others first, and was well regarded by the people around him.

After the Chinese Communist Party began its persecution of Falun Gong in 1999, Mr. Liao was put in prison for nine-and-a-half years. In Wangling Prison, he was tortured by various means, including being locked in a small cell, beaten with electric batons, forced to stand handcuffed for long durations, denied use of the restroom, deprived of sleep, and forced to stand in the baking sun.

He was released on November 18, 2016, and reunited with his family. 

Arrested Again, Six Months Later 

Mr. Liao was distributing pamphlets that informed people about Falun Gong and the persecution at the market under Suxian Overpass on May 28, 2017, when he was arrested by four plainclothes police officers and taken to the Suxian Police Station. He was transferred to Chenzhou City Detention Center on June 12, 2017.

Illegally Tried

Mr. Liao's family was notified on January 25, 2018, that he would be illegally tried on February 2 by the Chenzhou District Court.

The Chenzhou City 610 Office threatened Mr. Liao's family before the trial, saying that they would arrest any Falun Gong practitioners at the trial who talked about the practice. They also tried to prevent Mr. Liao's attorney from defending him in court.

At around 9:00 a.m. on February 2, many police officers, 610 Office personnel, and community officials from Shengzhou City and nearby counties gathered around the entrance to the Suxian District Courthouse. They tried to take pictures of the people who entered the courthouse. They stopped when it was pointed out that doing so was illegal.

Mr. Liao's attorney pointed out to the court that citizens have freedom of religious belief, according to Article 36 of the Chinese Constitution. In China, moreover, there is no law stating that practicing Falun Gong is illegal. The detention, allegations, and trial of Liao Zhijun were therefore all illegal. The prosecutor also had no actual evidence to support his accusation.

The lawyer finally submitted two documents to the court proving that it is legal to practice Falun Gong in China.

The first document was “Notice of MPS 2000 No. 39.” It was issued by the Ministry of Public Security, and identified 14 organizations as “cults.” Falun Gong is not on the list.

The second document was “Announcement 50” issued by the General Administration of Press and Publication on March 1, 2011. The document repealed the ban on the publication of Falun Gong books.

At that point, the presiding judge announced an adjournment.

A week later, Mr. Liao's father requested to meet with the presiding judge, Li Zhongquan. Li refused his request over the phone, saying that he was busy. Li said that he would consult his superiors to make the decision.

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