FAMILY members reacted with a mixture of joy, amazement and bewilderment at news that Wei Jingsheng was on his way home. ''It's all very sudden and rather strange but naturally I'm very happy if it is true that he has been freed,'' his brother Wei Xiaotou said. But the family were angry they were not formally notified. ''How come you foreign journalists can just call up the Ministry of Justice and get the news and we common people don't know anything?'' his sister Wei Ling said at her parents' apartment in the west of Beijing. ''They just don't care about us,'' she said. Ms Wei, 42, had brought over a box of mooncakes to celebrate her brother's return and her parents had prepared a homecoming banquet but by the time they found out what was happening the food had gone cold. Mr Wei's father, Wei Zhilin, 68, a retired senior official in the Ministry of Construction, was collected by a ministry car and taken to an unknown destination. The family initially said he was going to a nearby hospital because of his heart condition but later said they did not know where he was going, prompting speculation that he was being taken to see his son. The family were allowed regular visits to the prison at the Nanpu New Life Salt Farm to the east of Tianjin but because of the travelling time involved did not go very often.