(Clearwisdom.net) Mr. Yang Mingxiang is 68 years old and retired from his position as deputy head of the power factory at Lanzhou Oil Refinery. His wife Huang Juping is 66 years old and also a retiree from the power factory. They lived in the No. 1 Unit 3, Building 1119, Fuli Residential Building, Xigu District, Lanzhou City.

Cultivating in Falun Dafa eliminates illnesses

Mr. Yang Mingxiang was in poor health before practicing Falun Gong. He was hospitalized with illnesses nearly every winter, and Ms. Huang Juping suffered from Meniere's disease. They spent large sums of money on medical expenses but didn't see any signs of improvement at all. In late June 1997, a practitioner introduced Falun Dafa to them, and they have been practicing ever since. Soon their health improved, and their chronic illnesses went away.

Arrested for going to Beijing to speak out for Falun Gong

On June 25, 2000, Ms. Huang Juping was arrested by the police for shouting "Falun Dafa is good" and "Truthfulness-Benevolence-Forbearance is good" at Tiananmen Square and taken to the Miyun Detention Center. She was sent to the Lanzhou Oil Refinery's Liaison Office in Beijing after being detained for one day and one night. After that she was sent to the Taoshuping Detention Center for 15 days by the Retiree Department of Lanzhou Oil Refinery, where they were forced to move bricks and soil and to do other heavy labor.

In early November of 2000, Mr. Yang Mingxiang meditated at Tiananmen Square, which resulted in his arrest. They took him to the Xuanwu Detention Center, and it was very cold in Beijing at that time. A police officer stripped off all of Mr. Yang's clothes and poured a barrel of cold water over him, forcing him to reveal his name and address. After being on a hunger strike for three days, Mr. Yang was taken to the Lanzhou Liaison Office in Beijing and later transferred to the Lanzhou Oil Refinery's Liaison Office in Beijing. Xu Dulin, secretary of the power factory of Lanzhou Oil Refinery, picked him up and sent him to the Siergou Detention Center in Xigu District for 15 days of detention.

Leaving home to avoid further persecution

In July 2000, Ms. Huang Juping returned home from the Taoshuping Detention Center. Police officers from the Fuli Police Station, sent by the Police Department of Lanzhou Oil Refinery, began to frequently monitor her to make sure that she was home. The family's life was severely disrupted.

On January 18 of 2001, the Xigu Police Department and the "610 office" tried to arrest the couple. They were forced to leave home to avoid further persecution, while their youngest son had to remain home.

At around midnight on January 19, police officers broke into their home, but failed to find them. After that, the Police Department of Lanzhou Oil Refinery and the power factory of Lanzhou Oil Refinery sent people to monitor their home 24 hours a day. They wouldn't allow their son to turn off the lights and made him always keep the door open. From 2001 to 2002, the police department of Lanzhou Oil Refinery called the couple's relatives in their hometown in Luan County, Hebei Province, trying to find them and threatening their relatives. In the meantime, the police sent people to search for the couple in the homes of their relatives and classmates in Lanzhou City, Yuzhong, Jiyuan and Tianshui.

In 2002, the Union of Lanzhou Oil Refinery published photos of Ms. Huang Juping in the Lanzhou Evening News and the Gansu Newspaper. They said that Ms. Huang Juping would be fired if she was not home by a set date.

Arrest, Torture, Forced Labor and Extortion

On the morning of August 3, 2003, Mr. Yang Mingxiang and Ms. Wang Juping were arrested by

Wei Dong, Liu Yong and He Bo of the Municipal National Security Division when they were leaving their rented apartment on Xinwudu Road. They took the keys from Mr. Yang Xiangming's pocket to ransack his home. They took away 8,000 Yuan in cash, a computer, printer, TV, cell phone, watch and other personal belongings.

Mr. Yang and Ms. Wang were taken to the City Police Department. In order to extract confessions, Wei Dong forced them to sit on an "Iron Chair,"* but they refused to give in to the police's demands. In the afternoon, the police sent them to the Hualinshan Second Detention Center and forced Mr. Yang Mingxiang to peel lily roots. On August 29, they were transferred to Gongjiawan Brainwashing Center. The officers tried to coerce them into writing statements renouncing Falun Gong, and they were forced to undergo brainwashing every day. At the end of 2003 and the beginning of 2004, Ms. Huang Juping and Mr. Yang Mingxiang returned home. During the three months in the brainwashing center, each of them was forced to pay 10,000 yuan in the name of "living expenses."

After Mr. Yang returned home, he continued to request the return of his personal belongings that were confiscated by Wei Dong of the City Police Department. However, Wei just gave back Mr. Yang's identification documents and watch, and kept the other items and cash.

*Iron Chair - a person is required to sit on a metal chair with shackles and handcuffs which are so tight that they cut into one's flesh with the slightest movement