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ICC Note: According to reports, Chinese pastor Yang Hua, also known as Li Guozhi, was charged with “illegally holding state secrets” and is currently facing criminal detention. Yang was first detained for 10 days on lesser charges on December 9 but, just as Yang finished the sentence for the previous charges, his wife was informed on Sunday of the new charges. Yang’s family has since hired a lawyer; however, authorities have yet to allow him to meet with his client.

By Brynne Lawrence

12/22/2015 China (China Aid) – After witnessing officials forcing her husband into an unidentified van, Wang Hongwu, the wife of detained Huoshi Church pastor Yang Hua, received a notice on Sunday, stating that Yang is suspected of “illegally holding state secrets” and has been criminally detained.

Yang, whose real name is Li Guozhi, was initially detained on Dec. 9. He was sentenced to administrative detention for two charges and was given five days of detention for each count.

Wang documented her account of the events surrounding Yang’s detention in the following post on Weibo, a popular Chinese social media service:

“Today, I went to pick up Pastor Yang, but I failed. [I] saw four people pushing Yang Hua into a van without a license plate. Pastor Yang put on a black hood, and his mouth might have been sealed. I called out to him, but he didn’t respond. Those four people did not allow me to approach him. They pushed Pastor Yang into the car and sped away. I asked the detention center, and they only said that the department managing him took him away. They could not tell me which department [had taken him]. Then, I went home … I can only hand everything to the Lord!”

In response to these events, Yang’s family hired lawyer Chen Jiangang as his defense attorney. However, the authorities in charge of the investigation refused to permit Chen to meet with his client yesterday.

China Aid also learned that the Nanming District Public Security Bureau raided and searched Yang’s home yesterday but has no other details at this time.

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