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Recent Arrests and Extortion of Falun Gong Practitioners by Gucheng County Police in Hebei Province

August 20, 2006 |  

(Clearwidom.net) Beginning in March 2006, the 610 Office and police department of Gucheng County in Hebei Province started another round of persecution against Falun Gong practitioners Sun Hongcai, Yao Shihui, Shang Hongshen, He Feng, Lin Wei, Shao Li, and Zhai Hongjun. Police from the detention center and each local police station illegally arrested practitioners, sent them to forced labor camps, and extorted money from them. According to an inside source: "The director of the police department assigned quotas to each subordinate section and police station. We dared not touch the real criminals, so we decided on Falun Gong practitioners to make up the numbers. It was easy to do and profitable, since we could hold them until they forked over the money. When the police department ran over budget, they would arrest 30-40 Falun Gong practitioners and get 200-300 thousand yuan. Then the director and section heads would have some money to squander for a while."

From the evening of March 1, 2006, to the next morning, the police arrested 13 practitioners; in mid April, they arrested another four; from the morning of May 11 to the afternoon of May 12, they took away at least seven practitioners. Several other attempts were not successful because the police could not give a valid reason or show any legal documents when the practitioners demanded them.

Several police dragged Qinghan Town practitioner Ms. Li Binrong from home and tore her pants in the process. Ms. Li was kept unlawfully in the detention center for more than a month and fined an unknown amount of money.

Ms. Wang Xiuzhi is in her 50s and lives in the county. On the morning of March 2, she was taken away from home by about seven officers. They put her in the detention center for more than 20 days. In just a few days, a once healthy woman was tortured until she suffered a heart attack. In addition, her body was so swollen and so painful that she could hardly walk. Even after her release for medical treatment, the police still constantly went to her home to harass her. As a result, the whole family lived in fear and pain.

Practitioners Ms. Zhou Guilan and Liu Yuanzhen asked for 500 yuan back that had been seized illegally by the Political and Security Section, but officer Shao Li simply ignored their requests. Moreover, a few days later, the Zhengkou Town Police Station told them to come to the police department to get the money, but instead, after the two ladies got in the police car, they were taken to the detention center. The police dragged them inside. Liu Yuanzhen protested, "What you are doing is illegal. You trapped me here. I have a young child unattended at home. If anything happens to my child, you will be fully responsible for it. You must release me today." However, Shao Li and others pretended they didn't hear anything and just left them there.

With strong righteous thoughts, Liu Yuanzhen was released. But Ms. Zhou was kept there for over two months, during which time, she went into shock several times. However, Shao Li and the other officers didn't pay attention to it at all and still sent Ms. Zhou to the Gaoyang Forced Labor Camp for two years. While undergoing a physical exam there, Ms. Zhou had a heart attack and fainted. According to law, this kind of critically ill patient cannot be sent to serve forced labor, yet Shao Li and the others insisted. Ms. Zhou's family was very upset because they have already paid a great deal of money without getting her back.

Wang Chunlan was arrested from home by police department officer Cui Jian and others. After being persecuted for two months in the detention center, she was sentenced to one year of forced labor in the Gaoyang Forced Labor Camp.

Ms. Zhang Guizhi is from Xinzhuang Township. Because she kept practicing Falun Gong, she was subjected to persecution in the detention center many times. In 2002, she was sent to prison for three years and was released on the 2005 Chinese New Year. Unable to stand the pressure of one arrest after another, Ms. Zhang's husband died in 2003. Due to financial difficulties, Ms. Zhang has lived on irregular work. On March 2, 2006, while she was working, a group of police officers arrested her and took her to the detention center. Two months later they sent her to Gaoyang Forced Labor Camp, again for an unknown term.

Ms. Dong Yanwen is from Gucheng Town. She has been threatened by police many times for practicing Falun Gong. Last year her mother died from illness related to the stress. On March 2, 2006, Ms. Dong was taken to the detention center by police from the Gucheng Town Police Station. She has a four-year-old son at home and was not set free until her husband demanded her release from the police department many times and paid the extortion fee.

Liu Zhiwen from Xiazhuang Township was arrested many times for practicing Falun Gong. In 2000, he was "illegally sentenced" to two years in prison. On March 2, 2006, Mr. Liu was arrested by local police. After two months in the detention center, he was sentenced to three years in prison. When Gaoyang Forced Labor Camp refused to take him because an exam disclosed an illness, he was sent back to the detention center. After extorting several thousand yuan from him, authorities released him.

Falun Gong practitioner Ms. Li Lanfen is close to 60 years old and owns a hotel. On the evening of March 1, 2006, Cui Jian and other police officers told her and her husband to go to the Zhengkou Police Station because they had to "investigate their hotel." Her husband was released that day, but Ms. Li was sent to a detention center to do forced labor. She suffered tremendously in both mind and body and even had a heart attack. In late May she was sent to serve 18 months in Gaoyang Forced Labor Camp. Due to her illness, the labor camp would not accept her, so the Gucheng Detention Center kept her. Her family's only option was to pay 5000 yuan to get her back.

On May 11, Falun Gong practitioner Ms. Shen Yingqin was arrested at home. Police officers Shao Li and Zhai Hongjun took her to the detention center. They attempted to send her to the Hengshui Brainwashing Center without success, so they are keeping her in the detention center indefinitely.

On the afternoon of May 12, more than 20 police officers, including Cui Jian and Sun Guoheng, suddenly broke into practitioner Ms. Ye Shufang's place to search illegally. They also took advantage of the situation to get Ms. Ye's daughter-in-law, practitioner Wei Xiubian, to come home from work and arrested her as well. They put her in the detention center for one month and the National Security Division extorted over 1000 yuan from her.

In the afternoon on May 12, police arrested practitioner Ms. Fang Xinzhi and injured her arm by twisting it. Her left hand became so painful that she could not hold anything. They kept her in the detention center for one month and extorted over 1000 yuan from her. Her daughter had to live at home alone, in constant worry. Last year, Ms. Fang's husband was sent to three years in Handan Forced Labor Camp because he practiced Falun Gong.

Practitioners who were arrested and detained in May also include: Ning Liying from Juntun Township and Yang Fuyun from Caokou Village of Jianguo Town, as well as Wang Changgen and Zhao Zanhuan from Sanlang Township.

The above represents only a small portion of the cases of persecution of Falun Gong practitioners by the Gucheng police. More evildoers and their crimes will be exposed in the future.

July 29, 2006