(Clearwisdom.net) Tianjin Dafa practitioner Mr. Zhang Xiangjun was sentenced to twelve years in prison because of his unwavering faith. He was detained at the Number 1 Prison in Tianjin City.

Zhang Xiangjun lived in Shangcang Town, Ji County, a suburban county of the Tianjin City metropolitan area. When the persecution started on July 20, 1999, he went to Beijing to appeal against the persecution. Police from the Tiananmen Police Station illegally arrested Mr. Zhang and another practitioner, Zhang Yudong, after they unfurled a large banner on top of the stone bridge in front of Tiananmen. Deputies of the Public Security Bureau from the Ji County Government who were stationed in Beijing savagely beat them. That evening they were transported to the Ji County Public Security Bureau branch.

The practitioners were interrogated throughout the night at the police office and were asked why they went to raise the banner in Beijing. Zhang Xiangjun and Zhang Yudong replied, "Falun Gong is a cultivation system of the Buddha School and guides people to be outstanding citizens based on the principles of Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance. We are innocent, Falun Dafa is innocent, and our Teacher is innocent. We ask that the wrong be rectified for Dafa and our Teacher." The police then handcuffed both practitioners and hung them by the handcuffs. They were kicked and beaten. The police shocked their faces, chests and entire bodies with electric batons for 24 hours. Even though there were wounds all over their bodies, they proclaimed, "Falun Dafa is good" and "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance is good," and they continued to clarify the truth to the police.

They were detained separately at the Ji County Detention Center. Deputy Chief Li Hemin of the Ji County Public Security Bureau and Detention Center Chief Wang Xuesong told them that they would be released as soon as they give up practicing Falun Gong. Zhang Xiangjun said, "We will continue practicing Falun Gong. We believe in Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance and being a good person." The two police officials replied, "Very well then, let's see if your mouth is as resolute as our electric batons." The electric shocks caused severe blisters all over their bodies, and the odor of burned flesh filled the air. The police then poured cold water over them and tried to force them to write a guarantee statement. They refused. The two police officials then ordered them to be taken back to their cells and to be watched over closely. They were handcuffed and shackled. After enduring brutal torture at the detention center, they were transferred back to Tianjin Qingbowa Forced Labor Camp. Mr. Zhang Xiangjun remained there, while Mr. Zhang Yudong was further transferred to Shuangkou Forced Labor Camp in the Beichen District.

According to Mr. Zhang Xiangjun's personal account of his persecution, he was sent to a brainwashing center. Many practitioners were persecuted there, and Mr. Zhang was no exception. The police started by trying to persuade him to quit practicing Falun Gong and be "transformed." Mr. Zhang clarified the truth to them by explaining what Falun Gong is, and that Falun Gong practitioners are all good people who try to adhere to the principles of Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance. Practicing Falun Gong allows people to regain their physical health and improve their moral standard, bringing back social stability.

The police started cursing, "When the Chinese Communist Party says that you are wrong, you are wrong, even if you are not. We can tell you that our superiors have instructed us that if you are not 'transformed' ideologically, then you will be transformed by fire (cremation). Even if we kill you, you will die in vain, and we will get our bonus." Seduced by money and succumbing to orders from above, they started savagely torturing Zhang Xiangjun. They tied him to the tiger bench and used seven electric batons to shock him simultaneously. They shocked him on his face, in his mouth, and in his groin area. The police screamed, "Will you practice or not?" The reply that they heard was, "Practice." The police lashed Mr. Zhang with leather belts, and he suffered a most atrocious beating. He routinely passed out several times each day under such torture. The police then poured cold water over him to force him to regain consciousness. Mr. Zhang started a hunger strike to protest. The police inserted a feeding tube through his nose. He was deprived of sleep for many days, and each forced feeding was extremely painful, with blood oozing out of his mouth. He went on a hunger strike for two months, and his plump body became a skeleton.

The police prohibited Zhang Xiangjun's family from visiting him. No family visits were to be allowed until he was "transformed." The police also froze Mr. Zhang's bank account to seal off his economic means. The police even tried to persuade his family to "transform" him. His family replied, "He is innocent, he is a fine fellow." The police did not accomplish their objective, but they still kept Mr. Zhang's bank account frozen. Now his parents and children can only make ends meet by borrowing money.

The police finally notified Mr. Zhang's family to come and take him home after nearly torturing him to death. They left him outside in the main courtyard. The Ji County 610 Office employed six people to monitor his home, day and night. They refused to let him contact anyone outside his family and never allowed anyone to visit him. After several months of Fa study and practice, he regained his health. One day late at night, he escaped after the people monitoring him fell asleep. From there Mr. Zhang was forced to stay away from home and had to beg for food to survive. Yet he never forgot that he was a practitioner, and continued his efforts in the Fa Rectification, clarifying the truth wherever he went.

Zhang Xianghun worried his parents and child, who were left at home. (His wife, also a Falun Gong practitioner, was arrested and jailed at the Tianjin Women's Prison. She also refused to be "transformed.") The police were able to pinpoint his position when he called home using a cell phone. Mr. Zhang was again abducted by the police and brought back to Ji County Public Security Bureau. This time they tortured him even more atrociously. The police tied him up with ropes for eight days and nights. They shackled his feet and did not allow him to eat or sleep. They poured cold water over him, and kicked and beat him until they broke two of his ribs. These wounds have never completely healed. Deputy Bureau Chief Li Hemin and Detention Center Chief Wang Xuesong personally beat Mr. Zhang Xiangjun. They shocked him with six or seven electric batons. His blood pressure went as high as 280, and he lost his consciousness because of the torture. He was jailed at the Ji County Detention Center.

The Chinese Procuratorate and Court sentenced Mr. Zhang Xiangjun to a twelve year prison term without any evidence of wrongdoing. He was sent to the Number 1 Prison in Tianjin City. To this day Mr. Zhang refuses to wear inmates' clothing or do any prison labor. He has said, "We are innocent. We are Dafa practitioners." He takes every opportunity to clarify truth to the prison guards and police and to validate Dafa. Finally, Mr. Zhang appealed to practitioners overseas to file a lawsuit against Li Hemin, deputy chief of the Public Security Bureau, and Wang Xuesong, chief of the Ji County Detention Center. They must be prosecuted to the fullest extent allowed by law.