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It's one of a growing number of incidents—the Chinese regime targeting dissidents and human rights lawyers. A Chinese attorney has been sentenced to two years in prison. And the long persecuted Falun Gong spiritual group finds itself at the heart of this case.
On July 13, the Chinese regime sentenced a Guangzhou based lawyer, Zhu Yubiao, to two years in prison for defending members of Falun Gong—a spiritual practice the regime has been persecuting since 1999. He was charged with so-called "sabotaging law enforcement."
Zhu was arrested last August. Authorities ransacked his home and allegedly found Falun Gong books and CD-ROMs. He was formally charged in September and secretly put on trial in May this year.
This isn't the first time Zhu has found himself on the wrong side of the Chinese regime for defending Falun Gong.
He was the first attorney to openly defend Falun Gong practitioners in Guangdong Province. He represented three adherents between 2005 and 2006. In February 2007, he was abducted by authorities, tortured, and sentenced to 18 months of forced labor under the charge of being a counterrevolutionary. When he refused to sign a guarantee statement promising to stop defending Falun Gong, his law license was revoked.
Zhu's mother believes the 610 Office is controlling the case. It's an extralegal taskforce the Chinese Communist Party created to oversee the persecution of Falun Gong.
[Mrs. Zhu, Mother of Zhu Yubiao]:
"When I spoke with the procuratorate, they told me to ask my son to write a guarantee and then he'd be allowed to go home. This means the judicial system controlled by the 610 Office also believes what Zhu Yubiao has done does not constitute any crimes."