Shaanxi Man Dies in Custody Nine Months after Arrest for His Faith

A man in Baoji City, Shaanxi Province died in police custody in October 2019, nine months following his latest arrest for practising Falun Gong. He was 48.

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.

Mr. Xi Shuansheng was arrested on January 13, 2019, and detained at the Weibin District Detention Center. He passed away on October 30 at Yikang Hospital. When his family saw his body in the hospital, his head was covered with blood and a nasal cannula was still in place.

Mr. Xi’s body was cremated five days after his death. Further details remain to be investigated.

Past Persecution
Mr. Xi credited Falun Gong for turning him into a better person, but he was repeatedly persecuted for holding firm to his faith.

He was arrested in November 2008 and later sentenced by the Jintai District Court. While serving time at Weinan Prison, he was forced to stand for days and was deprived of sleep. His feet became swollen from the torture.

Every Falun Gong practitioner was monitored by several inmates, who reported their daily activities to the guards.

Mr. Xi was still targeted for his faith after he was released from prison. He and five other practitioners were studying the Falun Gong teachings at Ms. Wang Guaiyan’s home on May 8, 2018, when Han Baoxiang, the head of the Weibin District 610 Office, an extralegal agency created to persecute Falun Gong, broke in with several police officers.

Mr. Xi was slapped in the face when he demanded to see the officers' IDs. Ms. Wang was also beaten.

Mr. Xi, Ms. Wang, and the other practitioners were taken to the Jiangtanlu Police Station and interrogated. They were released after being held from five to ten days in custody.

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