(Minghui.org) A 75-year-old veteran in Chongqing is facing prison time for his faith in Falun Gong, a spiritual and meditation discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.
Mr. Cheng Defu was arrested on March 7, 2020 for clarifying the facts about Falun Gong to the residential committee and agents of the 610 Office, an extralegal agency created specifically to persecute Falun Gong. He was later released on bail after the local detention center refused to admit him due to his poor health.
In June, the police submitted his case to the Nanchuan District Procuratorate. The prosecutor indicted him on June 23 and forwarded his case to the Nanchuan District Court.
On December 1, the police went to Mr. Cheng’s home. As he wasn’t home, they arrested his wife Ms. Xu Dezhen and threatened her at the police station, “We are going to sentence Cheng Defu to five to ten years. You’d better leave him soon, or you will be implicated.”
The Nanchuan District Court held a pre-trial meeting on December 3. His wife and lawyer also attended it.
Mr. Cheng recounted in the meeting how the police beat him, knocked out two of his teeth and injured his arm during his arrest on March 7. Now ten months have passed, and his arm still hasn’t recovered, which caused a lot of difficulty in his daily life.
The judge blamed Mr. Cheng for resisting the arrest and said the police just used a little too much force.
When Mr. Cheng urged the judge not to be a part of the persecution, the judge replied that he would crack down hard on Falun Gong. He threatened Mr. Cheng that if he didn’t renounce Falun Gong, he would be sentenced to at least five years, but if he agreed to write a statement to renounce Falun Gong, he would get a lighter sentence of less than three years or even probation.
After the pre-trial hearing, Mr. Cheng’s wife packed her clothes and went back to her old home that she lived in before marrying Mr. Cheng. Now Mr. Cheng struggles to care for himself, with the injury to his arm.
He recently received a notice from the court that he would be scheduled to appear in court soon.
Since the Chinese communist regime ordered the persecution of Falun Gong, Mr. Cheng has been repeatedly arrested and detained. He was held at a forced labor camp and a brainwashing center. He was once almost beaten to death by a murderer.
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