Alimujiang Yimiti was born in June, 1973, in Hami, Xinjiang. In 1995, he converted from Islam to Christianity and became a house church leader. He and his wife have two boys. Alimujiang was a regional manager of a British food company (founded in 2000) in Kashi.
On September 13, 2007, the Kashi Bureau of Religious and Ethnic Affairs charged Alimujiang with being “illegally involved in religious activities in the Kashi area; spreading Christianity among the Uyghur population; and delivering religious materials.”
On January 12, 2008, the Kashi Public Safety Department placed Alimujiang in criminal detention and accused him of “jeopardizing national security and providing national secrets to foreign countries.” On February 20, 2008, the Procuratorate ratified the arrest, and Alimujiang was detained in Kashi Prison. (On September 12th 2008, the UN OHCHR Working Group on Arbitrary Detention issued an opinion affirming Alimujiang had been illegally detained by the Chinese government.)
On May 27, 2008, the Kashi Intermediate People’s Court opened the trial on Alimujiang’s case. The same night, the court announced a “lack of evidence” and asked the local police to do further investigation. On July 28th, the court opened for a second trial; however, the court did not announce the decision. Over a year later, on August 6, 2009, Alimujiang was charged with “providing state secrets to foreigners” and was sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment. His defense lawyer Li Dunyong and his family did not learn about his sentence until December, 2009, which is in violation of Chinese law.
Alimujiang could not admit to being guilty, and he subsequently agreed to appeal from prison. Mr. Li Baiguang, an experienced lawyer from Beijing Gongxin Law Office, agreed to take his appeal case. On January 7, 2010, Attorney Li sent Alimujiang’s letters of appeal to the regional and national Courts.