The Persecution of Li Tongzhi in Hantan City, Hebei Province
(Clearwisdom.net) Mr. Li Tongzhi, a Dafa practitioner in Hantan City, Hebei Province started to practice Falun Gong in 1997. Since then, he has been using the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance to guide his behavior. Within a year of practicing, he experienced the benefit of Falun Gong; the duodenal ulcer and insomnia that he had suffered for many years disappeared. What concerned his family and friends the most was his habit of gambling by playing Mahjong. It seemed no one could persuade him to quit. The family was nearly ruined because of his addiction to gambling. The teachings of Falun Dafa changed him greatly. He gave up gambling right away. Now, whenever he sees Mahjong, he has a headache and feels nauseous. Li Tongzhi was very grateful for Master Li's help. He was grateful that Dafa had saved his family. His belief in Dafa and Master became rock solid.
When the persecution of Falun Gong started in July 1999, Mr. Li went to Beijing to appeal to the central government and speak up for Falun Gong, using his personal experiences as examples of the goodness of Dafa. As soon as he arrived in Beijing, he was sent back to his local area. He could have been released on bail by his work unit; however, the leaders at his workplace fired him in order to protect themselves. Since then, Li Tongzhi was listed at the Guangmingqiao Office and the Guangmingqiao Police Station as an important person to keep an eye on.
From July 1999 to July 2008, for nine years, the local police searched Li Tongzhi's home and harassed his family countless times. He was illegally detained five times and sent to a labor camp twice. The first arrest was on October 1, 2000, after he went to Beijing to appeal to the government. He returned home after two days. Less than half an hour after he arrived home, Chen Mou, a policeman from the Guangmingqiao Police Station, came to his home and questioned him about where he had been, what he had done and also asked to check his train ticket. Li Tongzhi refused to answer any of these questions. After that the police started to watch him outside his home. On October 8, 2000, a friend came to Li Tongzhi's home to have a chat with him. When the conversation turned to Falun Gong, Li Tongzhi took out a truth-clarifying pamphlet to show his friend. Suddenly, Chen Mou and some others from the police station dashed into his home. Among them, one policeman quickly grabbed the literature and took Li Tongzhi and his friend to the Guangming Police Station. His friend was released in 24 hours because his family asked for help from an influential person. Li Tongzhi was sent to the No. 1 Detention Center on October 9, 2000. He was released two months later after being extorted out of 2,000 yuan.
The second arrest took place in mid-June of 2003 when the police ordered Li Tongzhi to go to the local brainwashing center, telling him that he would be released as soon as he wrote the "Four Statements" (similar to the Three Statements). Li Tongzhi refused. Officer Chen Mou from the Guangmingqiao Police Station and another seven to eight people forcefully took Mr. Li to the No. 1 Detention Center. After he had been on a protest hunger strike for 43 days, his brother posted bail for his release. Mr. Li's weight was reduced to just over 40 kilograms from his previous 65 kilograms. His brother had to carry him out of the detention center.
The third arrest took place one night in mid-October, around 3:00 a.m., 2004. Police officer Chen and four or five others (some were in plainclothes) rushed into his home and started an illegal search. They confiscated a Dafa book and took Li Tongzhi to the police station and then transferred him to the No. 2 Detention Center. He was released after more than a month after being extorted out of 2,000 yuan.
The fourth arrest was in 2005, when Li Tongzhi was working at a restaurant in the city. On the morning of March 13, while he was at a fellow practitioner's home, the police took Mr. Li to the Congxi Police Station in Congtai District under the guise of checking on household occupants. They confiscated the book Zhuan Falun, dozens of yuan, toiletries and his house key. At noon on March 13, they entered Mr. Li's home with his key and started a search. They turned his home upside down. A policeman chased his 13-year-old son around the house in order to slap his face. On April 20, Li Tongzhi was sentenced to two years of forced labor.
The fifth arrest, in July 2008, was related to the Olympic Games. On July 14 around 9:00 a.m., Political Instructor Wang Shugui, police officer Shen Lin and another policeman came to search his home for Falun Gong-related materials. His family members tried in vain to stop them. The police found a copy of Disintegrating the Culture of the Chinese Communist Party and truth-clarification DVDs. Li Tongzhi tried to clarify the facts to them, but they forcefully took him to the Guangmingqiao Police Station. The same afternoon, they sent him to the No. 1 Detention Center. A week later, he was sentenced to one year and three months of forced labor. Li Tongzhi is still detained in the labor camp.