Christian bookseller sentenced to seven years of prison in China
A Chinese Christian online bookstore owner has been sentenced to seven years in prison and fined nearly $30,000 for engaging in what the regime deems as “illegal business operations."
According to a document from the People’s Court of Linhai City, shared by Father Francis Liu from the Chinese Christian Fellowship of Righteousness, in addition to the seven-year sentence and imposed fine, Chen will also have his iPhone confiscated. Additionally, the 12,864 Christian books from his bookstore will be destroyed by the Linhai City Public Security Bureau.
In September 2019, Chen, who operated his online bookstore in Zhejiang province’s Taizhou city, was detained for selling unapproved religious publications imported from Taiwan, the US, and other countries. Consequently, the police launched a nationwide investigation to track down the bookstore’s customers through sale records and confiscated their purchased books.
In several provinces across the country, authorities have ordered residents to replace pictures of Jesus with those of Chairman Mao and those of General Secretary Xi Jinping.
The communist regime’s crackdown on religious freedom has also led the U.S. State Department to label it as a “country of particular concern” for “continuing to engage in particularly severe violations of religious freedom.”