Date: May 23, 2013
By Mark Ellis
Senior Correspondent, ASSIST News Service
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA (ANS) -- He was once a presiding judge of the intermediate court in an affluent city on China's east coast. But he became a beaten prisoner imprisoned for 11 years due to his involvement in the underground church.
"That's the story of brother Li JF, a dedicated Catholic brother in the underground church," says Bob Fu, founder and president of ChinaAid Association. "He was imprisoned not because of corruption or criminal activities but because he provided free legal advice to the weak and vulnerable," says Fu.
"Li could easily have gained a fortune if he chose to continue his comfortable legal career; he could have avoided arrest, beatings, and torture by staying silent in the face of injustice. But he chose a different way because his ears heard the Voice behind him: 'This is the way; walk in it.'" (Isaiah 30:21.)
In a letter to Fu after his release in April, Li wrote, "I lost everything but gained my faith in God!" In the letter he described how his health was destroyed during his incarceration, his wife divorced him following government threats, and his daughter disappeared.
Li's younger brother fled to Thailand in 2010 because of government threats, after two years in jail. While Li was imprisoned, government authorities s old his house.
"Brother Li still claims he gained from his imprisonment because he did not lose his faith in God," Fu says.
In the labor camp, Li worked 14 hours a day and spent three hours each day in "re-education" classes, which amounted to brainwashing sessions.