Name: Cao Dong
Occupation: Former employee of a travel company in Beijing
Date of Death: Unknown
Date of Most Recent Arrest: May 21st, 2006
Most Recent Place of Detention: Tianshui Prison
Persecution Suffered: Imprisonment, solitary confinement, denial of family visits
Key Persecutors: Wei Xinggang, Chu Zhiyong, and Zheng Zhanhai
Mr. Cao Dong has been detained at Tianshui Prison in Gansu Province. Mr. Cao's family has not heard from him by phone or through mail since August 2010. They mailed him money to pay for daily necessities at the prison in August, September, and October of 2010, but have not been able to confirm that he received it. They called the prison in November 2010 and were told by Liu, the section chief in charge of persecuting Falun Gong practitioners, that Mr. Cao “is doing well and will be released soon.” No details about Mr. Cao's current condition were provided.
Mr. Cao, from Qingyang City, Gansu Province, is a graduate of Beijing Foreign Language University and worked at a travel company in Beijing.
In his effort to rescue his imprisoned wife, Ms. Yang Xiaojing, Mr. Cao met with the vice president of the European Parliament, Mr. Edward McMillan-Scott, on May 21st, 2006. During their two-and-a-half-hour meeting, he told Mr. McMillan-Scott how his wife and other practitioners suffered persecution. Plainclothes police officers from the Beijing Police Department Second Division arrested him while he was on his way home after the meeting.
After being secretly detained in Beijing for three months, Mr. Cao was sent back to Qingyang City, his hometown. On February 8th, 2007, he was sentenced to five years in prison. He has since been detained in solitary confinement at the Tianshui Prison in Gansu Province.
Upon being released from the labour camp, Mr. Cao's wife became homeless in order to avoid further arrests and harassment by authorities. Due to the long-term physical and mental torture suffered during detention, poor living conditions, and living in constant fear and uncertainty, her health deteriorated, and she passed away on October 1st, 2009.
During Mr. Cao's and Ms. Yang's eight-plus years of marriage, they lived together for less than a month, because one of them was always in detention for practising Falun Gong.
Mr. Cao's family is worried about his current condition. His parents have been under tremendous stress due to the persecution suffered by their son. They are too weak to visit him since the prison is too far away. His in-laws' health has also deteriorated since the loss of their daughter (Mr. Cao's wife), so they are also not able to visit him.
Parties involved in the persecution:
Director Wei Xinggang and Deputy Director Chu Zhiyong, Tianshui Prison: 196 Jianshe Road, Qinzhou District, Tianshui City, Gansu Province, 741000
Zheng Zhanhai, party secretary: 86-0938-8279097
Chinese version available at http://www.minghui.ca/mh/articles/2004/11/30/90383.html
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