(Minghui.org) Mr. Yang Shiyi’s family was notified at the end of December 2023 that he had been sentenced to five years, but the caller refused to reveal when the Xiangtan City, Hunan Province, resident had been indicted, tried, or sentenced. His loved ones were only told that he had been admitted to the Wangling Prison in You County in the same province. 

Mr. Yang’s prison sentencing followed his arrest on February 20, 2023, by several officers from the Yuntang Police Station. They broke into his home that day and took him to the Xiangtan City Detention Center. The police called his son the next day and said, “Your father and five other people hung up Falun Gong banners together. The other five suspects escaped and we only caught your father. You need to deliver some clothes to him.” 

Mr. Yang denied having ever put up the alleged banners, but he knew that he was being targeted again for simply being a practitioner of Falun Gong. The police were trying to turn his family against him, as sadly, some practitioners’ families have done in order to protect themselves from being implicated in the persecution.

This isn’t the first time that Mr. Yang has been targeted by the Chinese Communist Party after it began persecuting Falun Gong in July 1999. Prior to his latest sentencing, he served one labor camp term and two prison terms totaling 17 years. 

Past Persecution

Mr. Yang was interested in spiritual practice since he was young. He traveled across the country to look for a righteous practice but didn’t find it. When Falun Gong was introduced to the public in 1992, he was drawn to its profound teachings and took up the practice. His mother, a former nun who was forced to get married during one of the communist regime’s political campaigns, was very happy for him.

After the persecution started, Mr. Yang spent very limited time with his family due to repeated arrests and incarceration. When he was not in detention, he and his family also faced non-stop harassment from the authorities.

Mr. Yang was given a 1.5-year term at Xinkaipu Forced Labor Camp following an arrest for talking to people about Falun Gong in 2000. He was arrested again in March 2003 for distributing Falun Gong materials and sentenced to eight years in Wangling Prison. He was held at a brainwashing center for a month after another arrest on September 27, 2011. His next arrest was on January 14, 2013, for handing out Falun Gong materials, resulting in a 7.5-year sentence at the Wangling Prison. His mother was heartbroken and passed away a year later.

When Mr. Yang was released in July 2020, he took on the responsibility of caring for his father and son who has a mental disorder.

Mr. Yang’s father broke his hip and became bedridden in early 2022. Mr. Yang cleaned him and cooked for him, without seeking help from his brother and sister-in-law. Two months after his father passed away at the age of 100, Mr. Yang was arrested again for his faith.

Related reports:

Once Incarcerated for 17 Years, Hunan Man Arrested Again for Practicing Falun Gong

Practitioner Detained 22 Months, Sentenced to 7.5 Years for Distributing Fliers

After Eight Years of Imprisonment, Mr. Yang Shiyi from Xiangtan City Detained Again