(Minghui.org) Having been sentenced to three years for practicing Falun Gong, a 65-year-old retired worker is facing a prison sentence again following his latest arrest eight months ago.

Mr. Zhou Yubao, of Shifang City, Sichuan Province, was arrested on February 24, 2023, while mailing a letter. The police raided his home and put him in criminal detention at the Shifang City Detention Center.

Mr. Zhou’s family hired lawyer Zhang from Beijing on March 1, 2023. The lawyer and the family soon went to the detention center to visit Mr. Zhou. He told them that the police violated the law while handling his case, including arresting and raiding his home without showing their IDs or a search warrant. Only one arresting officer was in uniform and all of the more than a dozen officers who raided his home were in plainclothes. They did not provide a list of confiscated items as required by law.

The lawyer and the family then went to the Shifang City Police Department and asked to meet with someone from the Domestic Security Office, which was responsible for Mr. Zhou’s arrest and home raid. The security guard said that the Domestic Security Office had said earlier that they wouldn’t meet with Mr. Zhou’s family. The lawyer requested the guard to call the Domestic Security Office, which he rejected. The lawyer said, “It’s your fault if you didn’t make the call, but it’s up to the Domestic Security Office whether to meet with us.” The guard then agreed to call the Domestic Security Office, which then sent an officer out to talk to the lawyer, but not the family.

The lawyer submitted his Power of Attorney and demanded the police follow the law in handling his client’s case. He said he had heard about how the police violated the law in arresting Mr. Zhou. He also requested the police to return Mr. Zhou’s ID. It’s not clear whether the police did.

The lawyer and the family next went to the Shifang City Procuratorate to submit a complaint against the police for illegally arresting Mr. Zhou and ransacking his home. Director Cao suggested that they file the complaint with the police’s own supervision department. The lawyer said they would do so, but that wouldn’t replace the procuratorate’s supervision function.

Cao agreed to accept the complaint, but he warned that they may still end up delegating the case to the police. The lawyer responded that it was their choice, but at least they had to accept the complaint in the first place.

Mr. Zhou’s family returned to the procuratorate the next day to submit the formal written complaint. Cao accepted it and said they would make a decision in a week as to whether to transfer the case to the police.

Seven months have passed and the family hasn’t heard back from the procuratorate. They found out recently that Mr. Zhou was scheduled to appear in the Shifang City Court on October 19, 2023. It remains to be investigated whether the hearing indeed took place and what were other details about Mr. Zhou’s indictment.

Previous Three-year Term

Mr. Zhou retired from the Phosphorus Chemical Company under the Hongda Group. He took up Falun Gong in June 1997 when he was 39. Back then, he was struggling with multiple ailments, including prostatitis, aching bones, and chronic gastroenteritis. All the conditions disappeared a few months into his Falun Gong practice. He had more energy at work and won several awards.

Mr. Zhou was arrested on May 15, 2012, while traveling from Shifang to Guanghan City, about 17 miles away and also under the jurisdiction of Deyang City. He was beaten by the police and interrogated.

The Shifang City Court held a hearing of Mr. Zhou’s case on December 6, 2012. He recounted how the police beat him during interrogation. His lawyer also presented the CT report showing Mr. Zhou’s head injuries from the beating and demanded the prosecutor play the video recording of the interrogation.

Judge Tang Xinhe denied the request, with the excuse that the recording was too long to be presented in court. He also said: “China is dictated by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). It is the CCP’s world. Whoever goes outside to promote Falun Gong is in violation of the law.” He sentenced Mr. Zhou to three years in prison.

Lai Yanfa, the head of Shifang City Detention Center, took Mr. Zhou to the Wumaping Prison in Leshan City, Sichuan Province on April 9, 2013. Guard Gong Jinfu ordered an inmate to monitor him when he was forced to sit on a small stool motionless for long hours. He was also ordered to write statements to renounce Falun Gong. While he was serving time, the agents of the local 610 Office intimidated his wife and son.

When Mr. Zhou’s term expired on May 14, 2015, nearly 20 armed officers stopped his wife and son when they were on their way to pick him up. As soon as Mr. Zhou stepped out of the prison, he was seized by the 610 Office agents and taken into a van. He was allowed to go home later in the day.

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