(Minghui.org) Two Heze City, Shandong Province residents remain detained more than one year after they were arrested for their faith in Falun Gong, an ancient spiritual and meditation discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.

Ms. Zhao Aizhen and Ms. Wang Cuiying have been held at the Heze City Detention Center since their arrests on March 7, 2019 for distributing informational materials about Falun Gong. They are kept in a cell of about 200 square feet, shared with two dozens detainees. They were not allowed to take showers or wash their clothes, even during hot summer days. They could only wash their hair once a week. 

The detention center has also denied the practitioners visits from their families or lawyers, citing the coronavirus epidemic. 

Both practitioners were tried by the Juancheng County Court on January 15, 2020. It was reported that the judge returned their cases to the procuratorate for more evidence around March, before scheduling a second hearing in June. 

According to the practitioners’ families, they hired several lawyers but the lawyers were all forced to withdraw from the cases after being threatened with license suspension of their respective law firms. 

Further details about their hearing in June remain to be investigated. 

Related report:

Two Shandong Women Tried for Their Faith