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Tianjin Woman Secretly Imprisoned for Her Faith

Jan. 29, 2021 |   By a Minghui correspondent in Tianjin, China

(Minghui.org) A Tianjin woman sentenced last year for her faith in Falun Gong has been admitted to Tianjin Women’s Prison to serve time.

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a mind-body practice that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.

In early 2019, the Police Department in Tianjin issued a secret order, to have the local police stations and residential committees compile a list of local Falun Gong practitioners. 

On April 17, 2019, the police and residential committee staff members went to Ms. Wang Shumin’s home and asked her whether she still practiced Falun Gong. Ms. Wang said yes and her husband, Mr. Liu Songshan, said that he practiced before, but has stopped. 

The police ransacked the couple's place after showing a search warrant. Ms. Wang’s Falun Gong books, two printers, two computers and other personal belongings were confiscated. Both she and her husband were taken to the local police station. Mr. Liu was later released after he signed an interrogation record. 

Mr. Liu returned to the police station two days later and asked when would Ms. Wang be released. He also demanded that the police return his cellphone that was taken away during the raid. 

The police responded that they were putting Ms. Wang on criminal detention and would sentence her later on. They also arrested Mr. Liu and ransacked their place again. 

Mr. Liu suffered a heart attack while in custody and was then released. To avoid further harassment, he lived away from home. Unable to find him, the police went to his son’s place in Beijing and Ms. Wang’s mother’s place in Fengtai Town in Tianjin to look for him.

Ms. Wang was later transferred to the Ninghe District Detention Center. After the Ninghe District Procuratorate returned her case twice due to insufficient evidence, the prosecutor indicted her. She was charged with “undermining law enforcement,” a standard pretext used by the authorities to imprison Falun Gong practitioners. 

Ms. Wang was tried by the Ninghe District Court through a video conference on May 25, 2020. She questioned the prosecutor, Chang Ning, how she had allegedly “undermined law enforcement,” but Chang couldn’t answer her. When her lawyer pointed out that no law ever criminalized Falun Gong in China, Chang became visibly agitated.

In early September 2020, Ms. Wang was sentenced to four years and fined 10,000 yuan. She appealed to the Tianjin No. 3 Intermediate Court, but the judge of the higher court ruled to uphold her original verdict on November 9.

While she was waiting for the result of her appeal, Ms. Wang was taken to a brainwashing center and held there for two months. Her family confirmed in mid-January 2021 that she has been secretly taken to the Tianjin Women’s Prison. 

Prior to her latest imprisonment, Ms. Wang was sentenced to three years by the same court on February 10, 2004. She was arrested again on October 18, 2016, and detained for a short period of time. 

Related report:

Tianjin Woman Appeals Four-Year Prison Sentence for Her Faith