Leader faces 10 years' jail for sect tapes

Agence France-Presse, November 26 1999

A Falun Gong leader who allegedly amassed one of the largest collections of video and audio cassettes promoting the spiritual sect's teachings has been formally charged, a human rights group reported yesterday.

Xu Jinliang, a manager in Shandong province, is facing at least 10 years in jail for allegedly creating 4.3 million cassette tapes, the Hong Kong-based Information Centre of Human Rights and Democratic Movement in China said. He was recently charged with using an evil religion to destroy laws and being involved in an illegal business.

Xu also allegedly transferred one million yuan (HK$930,000) into an account for the Falun Gong group.

He worked as a manager at the Shandong Youth Science, Technology and Culture Service Centre.

Meanwhile, four people who published Falun Gong books in Nanning went on trial yesterday, but the court adjourned without a verdict. Arrested in August, they face charges of conducting illegal business by operating three factories which printed 50,000 Falun Gong books and 5,000 portraits of sect founder Li Hongzhi. They could be jailed for three to seven years.

Falun Gong, which combines Buddhism, Taoist beliefs and deep breathing exercises like qi gong, was officially banned in July. The Government later labelled it an "evil cult".

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