73-year-old Woman Sentenced to Seven Years for Her Faith
(Minghui.org) A 73-year-old Baoding City, Hebei Province, resident was secretly admitted to prison around August 2020 to serve a seven-year term for her faith in Falun Gong, a spiritual and meditation discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.
Ms. Gao Jinping was arrested on August 22, 2019. Her computer and Falun Gong books were confiscated. Her family said the police had been following them and asking her daughter about her address before arresting her.
The Gaoyang County Court held a hearing on December 5, 2019, and sentenced Ms. Gao to seven years with a 10,000-yuan fine on February 23, 2020.
Ms. Gao appealed to the Baoding City Intermediate Court, which ruled to uphold the verdict on April 26 without having a hearing. According to people familiar with her case, there was no use for her to appeal the sentence, as the term was pre-determined by the intermediate court itself.
Around August 2020, Ms. Gao’s family received a call from a person who identified herself as Ms. Gao’s friend. She said that Ms. Gao has been transferred to the Shijiazhuang Women’s Prison and she had entrusted the caller to inform her family.
Prior to that, Ms. Gao’s family had been making deposits for her at the Baoding City Detention Center, where she was detained after her arrest. But they were denied visitation due to the pandemic.
Ms. Gao, a retired textile factory worker, took up Falun Gong in 1999. She credits the practice for curing her fatty liver and other ailments.
On September 9, 2013, while she was cooking at home, the police knocked on the door. After her husband opened the door, the police broke in, ransacked their residence, and confiscated her computer and printer. After the Baoding Detention Center refused to accept Ms. Gao due to her health, the police released her on bail that evening.
The Xinshi District Procuratorate summoned Ms. Gao in January 2014 prior to the Chinese New Year. To avoid the persecution, Ms. Gao lived away from home since, until she was arrested again in 2020. Her pension was also suspended in 2019. It’s not clear whether her latest sentencing is related to her arrest in 2013.