A resident of Huangchuan County passed away three months after she finished serving a 1.5-year prison term for practising Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.
Ms. Liu Zhenfang was emaciated when she was released from Henan Women's Prison on September 1, 2018. Despite extensive medical treatment, she died on December 7, 2018 with most of her internal organs festered. She was 60 years old.
Ms. Liu's death capped a decades-long ordeal for refusing to give up her faith. In her criminal complaint filed in 2015 against Jiang Zemin, the former communist regime leader who ordered the persecution of Falun Gong, she recounted how she was repeatedly arrested and subsequently tortured during the past 20 years.
She said in the complaint that her health suffered a dramatic decline after she was beaten twice for 16 and 33 hours, within ten days following her arrest in 2004 for distributing Falun Gong materials. Her internal organs were injured and she often vomited blood afterwards.
She was later given a five-year prison term, and the torture continued. Despite her weak physical condition, she was forced to work 14 hours each day without pay.
Eight years after being released from prison, she was arrested again, in 2017, and given a second prison term, which was followed by her untimely death.
Detention and Home-ransacking
Ms. Liu, a hairdresser, began practising Falun Gong in May 1998. Her lumbar disc herniation and bone hyperplasia soon went away. Her husband, who didn't practice Falun Gong, also received blessings. In a car accident in which he was thrown into the air and hit by motorcycle wheels, he wasn't injured at all.
Because she held firm to her faith, Ms. Liu became a police target with the onset of the persecution.
She was arrested four times and her home was ransacked three times between 1999 and 2003. Her Falun Gong books and related materials were seized by the police.
Ms. Liu was detained one month in the Hedian Detention Centre in early 2000. The police extorted 2,000 yuan from her before she was released.
She was arrested again in 2001 after the police found Falun Gong materials in her home. They took her to a secret detention facility inside a hotel and forced her to stand overnight without sleep. The 1,500 yuan she brought with her was snatched by the police.
The police interrogated her for the source of the materials, but she remained silent. They beat her for more than 20 hours and slammed her head against the wall. Clumps of her hair were pulled out and her scalp kept bleeding.
The police hung her from the window frame with handcuffs and continued beating her until she began to vomit blood.
When she still refused to disclose where she obtained the materials, the police sent her to Hedian Detention Center again and held her there for three months. Her family paid 2,000 yuan to a deputy director at the Domestic Security Division in order to get her out.
Shortly after that, she went with her 80-year-old mother to Beijing to appeal for Falun Gong. Both women were arrested and held at the Hedian Detention Center. She vomited blood and was unable to eat. The guards released her one day later, but kept her elderly mother in detention for a month.
She was reported to the police for distributing Falun Gong materials in 2003 and arrested again. She escaped from Pengjiadian Police Station during an interrogation, and was forced to live away from home to hide from the police. Unable to find her, the police arrested her husband and detained him for 15 days.
49 Hours of Savage Beatings
Shortly after she returned home, the police arrested her and her husband, on February 2, 2004. When her daughter tried to prevent the police from arresting her parents, they pushed her to the ground and threatened to arrest her.
One officer at the Guangshan Police Department verbally abused her, and four officers savagely beat her. They pulled her hair and ripped her clothes. When the officers became tired from the beatings, they began using a metal rod and took turns beating her until the rod broke. Exhausted from the beatings, the officers sat down and began knocking on her hands and fingers with the broken metal rod.
They beat her for 16 hours, from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 a.m. Her head, face, mouth, ears, and fingers kept bleeding. She was then taken to the Guangshan Detention Centre.
Nine days later, the officers took her back to the police department and beat her again, for 33 hours. Her body was covered with bruises, and she was bleeding all over. Her organs were injured and she vomited blood.
The officers continued asking where she obtained the Falun Gong flyers, and she refused to answer.
After she was taken back to the detention centre she often vomited blood. She was so weak that she was unable to walk or stand.
Meanwhile, the police detained her husband at the same detention centre for five months. He was forced to do slave labour both day and night, and only given one meal per day.
The guards tied his testis with a thin thread and burned it with a lighter.
Imprisoned for Five Years
Ms. Liu was given a five-year prison sentence a few months later, and taken to Henan Women's Prison on July 15, 2004.
The guards there forced her to sit on a small stool. A dozen inmates surrounded her, verbally abusing her and Falun Gong.
The inmates repeated this for 85 days. She was on the verge of death and passed out a dozen times.
Because she still refused to renounce Falun Gong, the guards began to put nerve-damaging drugs into her food. She stopped eating as soon as she noticed the drugs.
After her condition recovered a little, the guards forced her to work 15 hours per day without pay. She protested and they reduced her workload by one hour. When she became exhausted and took a short break, the guards came over and beat her.
In addition to the slave labour, the guards also found ways to physically torture her, including forcing her to stand for days without sleep or squatting for hours with her hands holding her head.
She was released from the prison on February 1, 2009.
In 2013, the police found her distributing Falun Gong materials again. She was forced to live away from home to escape from the persecution.
Her latest arrest was on March 3, 2017. She was sentenced to a 1.5-year prison term on December 20, 2017 this time.
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