(Clearwisdom.net) The Olympic torch relay was scheduled to pass through Yueyang City, Hunan Province on June 3, 2008. On June 1 and June 2, members of the Yueyang City 610 Office and officers from the Yueyang City Police Department and Yueyang City State Security arrested 25 practitioners. The police also searched the practitioners' homes. Of the 25 practitioners, three are from Yueyang City, six are from Pingjiang County, another six are from Yueyang County, four are from Miluo City, four are from the Liangxinbao area in Junshan District, one is from Xiangyin County, and one is from Huarong County.

Starting in March 2008, the Yueyang City 610 Office, the Yueyang City Police Department, and the State Security Division called officials to urgent security meetings from various neighborhood administration offices and Party committees of counties, townships, towns, villages, and individual organizations and work units. Orders were given to Party officials to keep an eye on each practitioner on file. The officials spread the rumor that it was mandatory to prevent Falun Gong followers from disrupting the Olympic torch relay. An all-out campaign was launched to arrest practitioners. Each practitioner on file was closely followed or watched. The officials even threatened some practitioners to prevent them from leaving home. There were cases where several people were dispatched to barricade a practitioner at his or her home so the practitioner remained under surveillance around the clock.

On the morning of June 3, no cars were allowed in the streets except those related to the Olympic torch relay. All fruit and vegetable stands and even farmer's markets had to close. Several thousand special-task-force police officers were called in from out of town. Streets and intersections where the torch relay was to pass were tightly guarded. The immediate area around the relay was guarded by the special-task-force police, and the next closest layer was guarded by officials and security personnel from organizations and work units. The pedestrians had to watch the relay from the third layer, where they stood. All roads leading into Yueyang City from suburban counties and cities were closed for 24 hours. Vehicles were allowed to leave Yueyang City but not to enter. When the torch came from across the neighboring Hubei Province, roads were sealed off, and all intersections were blocked with ropes and guarded by dedicated personnel. Police officers were on guard just a few feet apart on bridges.

Community Party officials revealed that it cost over 2 million yuan for the torch to pass by Huarong County. And it cost over 10 million yuan to hold the torch relay in Yueyang City. One should consider how many cities and towns there are across the country! How much money could have been saved and spent on helping earthquake victims or students who have been forced to drop out of school as they cannot afford it. It is so absurd that the Communist regime has wasted so many resources and called for such tight security using Falun Gong as an excuse. It is known even to the Communist leaders that Falun Gong practitioners do not fight back when beaten or cursed at.

Since the beginning of 2008, the Communist regime has used security for the Olympic Games and social stability as an excuse to launched a new round of persecution against Falun Gong. In Yueyang City alone, 38 practitioners have been unlawfully arrested since March 3, 2008. Nine of them remain in custody. Among them, Mr. Zhou Yongbing, Mr. Ding Dongting, Mr. Xue Zhongyi, Mr. Sun Pinghua, Ms. Shen Chunfang, Mr. Zhang Jian, and Mr. Zhou Xiangbao are being held at the Yueyang City Detention Center. Ms. Fu Dongxiu and Ms. Wang Ping are at the Yueyang County Detention Center.

Some practitioners have been denied visits from their families. Mr. Sun Pinghua's parents are in their seventies. Mr. Sun's father has a heart problem and has not been told about the unlawful arrest of his son. When Mr. Sun's mother learned that her son had become handicapped as a result of police brutality, she tried to visit her son. However, the Domestic Security Divisions of the Yueyang City Police Department and Yueyanglou District Police Department and Procuratorate kept sending her back and forth. So far she has not been able to see her son.

Mr. Zhou Xiangbao is in his seventies. He suffered from various illnesses before practicing Falun Gong. All his illnesses were gone, and he looked as if he were in his fifties after he started practicing Falun Gong. He was brutally tortured after he was arrested on March 5. He was then forced to engage in hard labor after being transferred to the Yueyang City Detention Center. He is in poor health.

Mr. Xue Zhongyi's hometown was hard hit in the earthquakes in May 2008. His mother, in her eighties, has been living in a tent since being rescued by kindhearted people. Mr. Xue's wife has a hard time making a living to support their four-year-old son. She went to the Domestic Security Division of the Yueyang City Police Department and the Domestic Security Division of the Yueyanglou District Police Department to ask for her husband's release. She was threatened instead.

Ms. Wang Ping, from Yueyang County, had spent several years in prison for her firm belief in Falun Dafa. She was taken into custody again only months after her release from prison.

All nine practitioners have been tortured during interrogation. Some have been deprived of sleep for days. The police have also mixed unknown substances into their food or injected unknown medicine into their bodies.