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01/08/2022 China (International Christian Concern) – A leader of a house church in China’s Guiyang, who was detained and accused of fraud on March 16, 2021, has finally been permitted to meet with his lawyer after more than six months.

ICC reported last November that his lawyer was banned from meeting him since the investigation was still ongoing. The authorities told Zhang’s lawyer that no details could be revealed about his case and that he could not visit Zhang.

According to his wife Yang Ai-Qing, on January 5, elder Zhang Chunlei from Love (Ren’ai) Reformed Church finally got to see his lawyer again at Guiyang City Second Detention Center. Zhang is doing great and has peace and joy in his heart. He wishes to pass his greetings to churches praying for him. He was in good spirits as he sang a song of praise.

His case is now handled by Guiyang city’s Procuratorate. Zhang was accused of fraud for collecting offerings for his church. Last November, the authorities also found that Zhang was allegedly involved in “subversion of state power.” While these are fabricated charges against Zhang, the Chinese authorities are increasingly using trumped-up crimes to put house church leaders behind bars.

Zhang was arrested last March following a police raid during a Christian retreat in Guiyang earlier that day. There were some members from his church in attendance. As an unregistered church, his church was shut down by the authorities in September 2018.

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