▪ Seven Years in Prison for Her Faith Leads to Mental Breakdown for Sichuan Woman
(Minghui.org) Ms. He Zhengqiong had lost the ability to walk and was in a delirious state when she was released from Chengdu Women’s Prison in 2016, after serving seven years for practicing Falun Gong, a spiritual and meditation discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.
Although her condition improved after she resumed doing the Falun Gong exercises, she suffered a mental health relapse in recent months.
Ms. He, a 56-year-old resident of Xichang City, Sichuan Province, was arrested on September 26, 2009 for raising awareness about the persecution of Falun Gong and sharing with people how she has benefited from the practice after picking it up in 2005.
Three other practitioners, including Ms. He’s aunt, Ms. He Xianzhen, Ms. Gao Deyu, and Ms. Cheng Donglan, were arrested around the same time.
The four women appeared in Xichang City Court on May 13, 2010. The prosecutor counted each page of the confiscated Falun Gong informational booklets as separate pieces of evidence. He thus concluded that the practitioners possessed more than 10,000 pieces of unlawful materials and should be given heavy sentences.
The practitioners’ lawyers requested that the booklets be presented in court, and that the prosecution witnesses be called for cross examination. The judge rejected the request and sentenced the practitioners to prison on September 14, 2010: Ms. Gao, 72, was sentenced to 12 years, Ms. Cheng and Ms. He Xianzhen each were sentenced to 10 years, and Ms. He Zhengqiong to 7 years.
Ms. Gao and Ms. He Zhengqiong were sent to Chengdu Women’s Prison. Ms. Cheng and Ms. He Xianzhen were taken to Yangmahe Women’s Prison.
Ms. He Zhengqiong was subjected to constant brainwashing aimed at forcing her to renounce her faith. As a result, she suffered a mental collapse before she was released and was unable to work in the prison’s factory.
Ms. He Xianzhen suffered a stroke on December 19, 2014 and was taken to a hospital. The doctors performed a brain surgery on her. The prison authorities demanded that her family cover all medical expenses in exchange for their approval for her medical parole. Her family didn’t have the money and had to see her taken back to prison.
Ms. He Xianzhen’s family was informed by the prison on February 2, 2017 that she had passed away earlier that day. She was 67.
In addition to her aunt, who lost her life in the persecution, Ms. He’s son-in-law’s mother, Ms. Hu Yunhuai, was also persecuted to death for practicing Falun Gong.