Despite Appeals Entire Family Sentenced to Prison for Their Beliefs

Mr. Zhou Dunwang, his wife and son were arrested in November 2016 because they are Falun Gong practitioners.

The Wucheng District Court of Jinhua City sentenced them on September 7, 2017: Mr. Zhou Dunwang to three years and nine months in prison, his wife Yang Xianfeng to three-and-a-half years, and their son Zhou Liang to one year and nine months. They were also fined 20,000 yuan, 15,000 yuan, and 10,000 yuan, respectively.

Mr. Zhou’s family appealed to the Jinhua Intermediate Court. The appeals court announced the decision to uphold the original sentences on December 10, 2017.

The wife and son both suffered a mental collapse while detained due to the stress of the persecution. Mr. Zhou Liang’s lawyer observed that his client’s condition was not good when he went to visit him on November 15, 2017. Mr. Zhou (the son) told his lawyer that he had been beaten.

His lawyer was worried about Mr. Zhou Liang and visited him again on November 22. The guard in charge claimed that he was sick and didn’t want to see the lawyer. The lawyer protested that it was inappropriate to detain Zhou Liang based on his condition, and it should be reported to the chief officer and the court. The guard said that he would.

When the lawyer went to visit Mr. Zhou Liang again on November 29, he was once again told that he didn’t want to see him.

After the final appeal decision was made, one of Mr. Zhou’s family members went to visit him on December 15. However, he did not come out to meet with him. When the family member asked why, a guard repeated the response that Mr. Zhou Liang didn’t want to see him.

The family member then met with the father, Mr. Zhou Dunwang, instead. He asked if the father knew that his son was sick and if he knew why he refused to see the family.

Mr. Zhou Dunwang said with tears in his eyes, “No one told me that he was ill. He hurried over to me on my way to meet you and said that the prison authorities would not allow him to meet with his lawyer or family members.”

Mr. Zhou Liang is now emaciated. His weight has dropped from 200 pounds to about 120 pounds. He is about 6 feet tall.

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