(Minghui.org) Two Chongqing residents were wrongly sentenced for practicing Falun Gong. After their appeals were turned down by Chongqing City No.1 Intermediate Court, they appealed to Chongqing High Court.
The high court accepted their appeal, reassigned the case to the intermediate court and instructed the practitioners to file motions to reconsider their case with the intermediate court, as the required legal step before the high court could hear their case.
Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.
Ms. Fu Zhongbi, 75, gave two flyers and a calendar with information about Falun Gong to a shop owner named Tong on October 4, 2020. Tong reported her to the police, who later arrested her. The police submitted Ms. Fu’s case to the Jiangbei District Procuratorate on April 19, 2021. The prosecutor indicted her on July 3 and moved her case to the Jiangbei District Court. She was tried on October 19 and sentenced to three years and three months on December 23, 2021, with a 5,000-yuan fine.
Mr. Chen Mingxi, 52, was arrested at home on June 8, 2021. He was tried on December 23, 2021 and sentenced to four years with a 13,000-yuan fine on February 18, 2022. Prior to his latest sentencing, he served two labor camp terms for a total of three years and was tortured into disability during the first term. His wife, Ms. Wang Xiaoxia, died on October 22, 2015, following a court hearing for her shared faith in Falun Gong.
Appeals with the Intermediate Court and High Court
Both Ms. Gu and Mr. Chen appealed with the Chongqing City No.1 Intermediate Court, which ruled to uphold their sentences on March 28 and 29, 2022, respectively.
In the intermediate court’s ruling, it stated that “It’s widely known that Falun Gong is a cult…” despite the lack of any legal basis to support the claim. The intermediate court also ignored the Chinese publication bureau’s decision to lift the ban on Falun Gong literature in 2011 and continued to list Falun Gong books confiscated from the practitioners as evidence against them.
The practitioners then filed another appeal with the Chongqing High Court on April 2, 2022 and demanded a re-trial of their cases. After receiving their appeals, the high court directed them back to the intermediate court and urged them to file a motion to reconsider their case, the next legal step after their appeals were rejected by the intermediate court. The high court also provided a template of how to file the motion to reconsider the case.
When the practitioners first submitted the motion with the intermediate court, it refused to accept it, with the excuse that it has already made the decision on their appeal cases. But after the practitioners told them that the case has been taken up by the high court, the intermediate court agreed to accept their motion on April 8.
Ou Mingyan (欧明艳), presiding judge of Chongqing No.1 Intermediate Court [Editor’s note: Her name was mistakenly reported as Ouyang Yan (欧阳燕) in previous article.]Xie Yi (谢懿), judge of Chongqing No.1 Intermediate CourtLi Ying (李颖), judge of Chongqing No.1 Intermediate CourtXie Yujie (夏玉杰), judge’s assistantChen Jiayu (陈佳宇), court clerk: +86-23-67679767
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