Name: Qu Shumei
Date of Most Recent Arrest: December 17th, 2012
Most Recent Place of Detention: Yaojia Detention Centre in Dalian City
Persecution Suffered: Sleep deprivation, forced labour, beatings, imprisonment, solitary confinement, torture, sexual assault, extortion, fired from workplace, physical restraint, home ransacked, interrogation, detention
Dalian Falun Gong practitioner Ms. Qu Shumei was arrested at home on December 17th, 2012, by officers from Jiaojinshan Police Department. The police ransacked her home and took her to Yaojiao Detention Centre in Dalian that evening.
Ms. Qu, 49, was a saleswoman in Zhonghua Market. Her husband, Zhu Changbin, 46, was a seaman with Dalian Ocean Shipping Company. The couple began to practise Falun Gong in 1996.
After the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) began to persecute Falun Gong in July 1999, their lives were turned completely upside down. Ms. Qu was sent to a forced labour camp twice, and Mr. Zhu was given a 12-year sentence and is currently in Shenyang No. 1 Prison. Mr. Zhu’s father is now on his deathbed, holding on in hopes of seeing his son one last time. The couple’s son, Zhu Dongfang, was 15 years old when his father was sent to prison and is being raised by his grandparents.
After Appealing in Beijing
After the CCP banned Falun Gong, Ms. Qu went to Beijing to appeal for justice. She was arrested and detained in Dalian Xigang District Police Department for a month. She had 36,000 yuan1 extorted from her and also lost her job. The officer responsible for her case was Li Tijian, deputy section head of the Political and Legal Affairs Committee in Xigang.
For posting a flyer exposing the persecution on September 28th, 2000, Ms. Qu was arrested by officers from Nasha Police Department. Officer Li Zhenxia took Ms. Qu to a room at the station, and four officers (3 men and 1 woman) began to torture her. They handcuffed her behind her back and repeatedly kicked her leg as they raised and lowered her cuffed hands. The handcuffs cut into her wrists, and her hands were badly swollen. Ms. Qu was subsequently sent to Yaojia Detention Centre, where she was sentenced to two years at Dalian Forced Labour Camp.
At the Labour Camp
On March 19th, 2001, Dalian Forced Labour Camp authorities began a new round of torture of detained Falun Gong practitioners. In the evening, no one was allowed to sleep. At 9 p.m., guards ordered all the practitioners to stand up and bend over at 90 degrees with their legs apart. Papers with slanderous words about Falun Gong were then placed at their feet. Similar slogans were posted on doors, and loudspeakers were used to broadcast lies. Practitioners who moved their legs due to fatigue were hit with an electric baton. Anyone who could not endure the torture was forced to endorse the slander with a signature before he/she was allowed to sleep. Ms. Qu was very sick and started to vomit and shake but remained standing the whole night. By dawn, her legs were swollen and she noticed her own lost hair lying in front of her. The guards threatened to strip all the female practitioners and push them into the men’s area. Many practitioners had blisters on their faces due to electric shocks. Ms. Qu then decided to start a hunger strike to protest the abuse. The guards put her in a solitary cell. She had blood in her urine, a high fever, and scabies. She got only three hours of sleep a day, and her health declined dramatically. In April 2001, she was bailed out on medical grounds.
Husband Gets 12 Years in Prison
Ms. Qu’s husband, Mr. Zhu, was serving on an ocean liner when the persecution started in July 1999. After his ship returned, he was ordered to stop working. His management told him to write a guarantee statement to renounce practising Falun Gong before he could return to work. Mr. Zhu refused and was relieved from duty.
In March 2001, officer Li Zhenxia of Nansha Police Department went to Mr. Zhu’s house and took him into custody. Mr. Zhu was later transferred to Yaojia Detention Centre for 15 days.
On April 22nd, 2002, several officers led by Yuan Zhiming of the Shahekou District ransacked their home. Afterward, the police walked away with about 100,000 yuan in cash and a 110,000-yuan bank note. They then took both Mr. Zhu and Ms. Qu to Dalian Detention Centre. Ms. Qu began another hunger strike to protest and was subsequently released on June 3rd, 2002.
On Chinese New Year in early 2003, Mr. Zhu Changbin was sent to Dabei Prison in Shenyang City to serve a 12-year term. On December 19th, 2007, he was transferred to Shenyang No. 1 Prison, where he remains to this day.
Tortured in Dalian Forced Labour Camp
In July 2002, about a month after Ms. Qu Shumei was released, several individuals from the residential office and the police department came to her house. They pinned Ms. Qu to the floor face down and handcuffed her. Her son began to cry, “Why are you treating her like that? What crime did my mom commit?” The officers pushed the boy aside and carried Ms. Qu to a police car. She was taken to Dalian Forced Labour Camp and confined in a steel cage. They stretched her arms apart with handcuffs and tied her legs to each side of the cage so she had to support herself on her toes. She was left like that for two days.
Under the direction of prison guards, criminal inmates later tied Ms. Qu’s arms, back, and one leg to a fence rail and her remaining leg in a horizontal position. They kicked her between the legs, hit her with a wooden stick, and twisted her nipples. They also used a thick rope full of knots and pulled it back and forth between her legs. Chilli powder was then applied to her eyes as well as her bleeding vagina. They later tied her and fellow practitioner Wu Yueju to a death bed2.
Tortured in Masanjia Forced Labour Camp
On April 19th, 2004, Ms. Qu and practitioner Li Shuzhen were explaining the facts to people about Falun Gong. They were picked up and taken to Xinhaiwan Police Department. Later they were sent to Yaojia Detention Centre. Ms Qu was handed a 30-month term of forced labour at Dalian Labour Camp, of which 22 days were spent in solitary confinement, including three days on a death bed.
At the end of October 2004, Ms. Qu was transferred to the notorious Masanjia Forced Labour Camp. She was first in the No. 2 Women’s Camp. In April 2005, she was moved to the No. 1 Women’s Camp, where she was watched by criminal inmates. She suffered multiple injuries from the torture and mistreatment.
Between May 28th and 30th, 2006, guards tortured Ms. Qu for what they termed “insubordination.” She was handcuffed in a corner, with her face close to a steel pipe. She could neither stand up or nor completely squat down.
1. "Yuan" is the Chinese currency; 500 yuan is equal to the average monthly income of an urban worker in China.
2. "Death Bed" torture: A practitioner is tied to a bed with his hands handcuffed above his head to the bed rails, and his legs tied with thin nylon ropes. The rope is then tightly wrapped around the practitioner's body and the bed, from his legs to his chest. The rope is wrapped so tightly that the practitioner has difficulty breathing and eventually loses consciousness.
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