Persecution continues in China—and a serious attack by masked thugs also happened in Hong Kong.
by Yang Feng
Wang Jianmin is a quiet, soft-spoken retired medical doctor from Laiyang, a county-level city in Shandong province, famous in China for its production of tasty pears. On March 26, 2021, 65-year-old Wang was told by the Intermediate People’s Court of Yantai city, Shandong, that her crimes were so serious that she could not expect any leniency from the judges. She was sentenced to nine years in jail and fined 20,000 RMB.
What horrible crimes did this respected woman commit? On September 4, 2020, she was caught red-handed by the police while she was introducing a Falun Gong leaflet into the mailbox of Laiyang Unicom Company in Laiyang. Maybe the police car was stationed nearby to keep watch on the company, but she was also told she had been under surveillance since 2016 as a suspect Falun Gong practitioner.
The police jumped on her and seized her backpack. According to the court decision, they found there 7 Falun Gong letters, 43 leaflets, 9 books and periodicals, 47 amulets, and 24 “peace cards.” They then searched her home, and found more Falun Gong material there.
The investigation revealed that Wang was friend with a Mr. Zhou, the owner of a supermarket in Nanzangtuan village, Bolinzhuang town, Laiyang city. The supermarket was raided, and Falun Gong leaflets were found there too.
Wang was sentenced under Article 300 of the Chinese Criminal Code, for “using” a xie jiao, i.e., a banned religious group. When talking to foreigners, Chinese authorities, including Chinese embassies internationally, insist that Article 300 does not punish mere belief in the doctrines of a xie jiao, but only “criminal activities” performed on behalf of these groups. Wang’s story shows, once again, that by “criminal activities” the CCP means any form of propaganda for a xie jiao, and even keeping leaflets or books at home.
Nine years in one of the dreaded Chinese jails where prisoners of conscience are sent is indeed a severe sentence. Penalties for Falun Gong practitioners are increasing, as the CCP is furious about the success of the “Nine True Words Meditation” proposed by the banned movement as a way to boost the immune system during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Meanwhile, attacks against Falun Gong are also extending to Hong Kong. On April 12, four masked men entered the Epoch Times printing press there, and smashed computers and equipment with hammers, which resulted in the newspaper temporarily halting its printing.