Detained: May 13, 2013.
Charges: "Undermining national unity policy" (Art. 87/1999 VCC)
Sentence: 12 years in prison.
Biography: Y Yich served as a pastor in the Degar Protestant Church before his arrest in 2013. On May 13, 2013, authorities arrested Yich, after accusing him of spreading Degar Protestantism, a religious movement not approved by the government, communicating on the internet with Montagnard pastors and separatists living in the United States, and meeting with prisoners of conscience. Later in 2013, Yich was sentenced to 12 years in prison and three to five years' probation for "undermining national unity policy" (Art. 87/1999 VCC). Yich had been repeatedly harassed by authorities over the decades for his religious activity. He also spent time in prison between 2006 and 2011.
Prison authorities have allegedly tortured Y Yich and denied him adequate medical care, leading his health to deteriorate. He reportedly suffers from high blood pressure, rheumatism, and stomach inflammation.
Advocate: Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-WI)
Advocacy Partner: USCIRF