(Minghui.org) Long-term abuse while imprisoned for her belief in Falun Gong took a toll on Ms. Yang Yuhua's health. She was denied medical care when she needed it, but forced to take medication later. When she was released on July 7, 2013, she was emaciated and had severe eye damage. It took her over six months to recover.

Since the persecution of Falun Gong began in 1999, 65-year-old Ms. Yang, from Xinjin County in Sichuan Province, has suffered numerous forms of maltreatment including unlawful detention, torture, brainwashing and extortion.

Following her most recent arrest on July 7, 2010, Ms. Yang was sent straight to Longwangdu Detention Center, where she was held for months before she was secretly sentenced to three years on April 7, 2011. During her incarceration at Yangmahe Prison, she was subjected to intensive forced labor and brainwashing sessions.

Denied Medical Care When Sick, But Forced to Take Medication When Healthy

On the fourth day of her admission to Longwangdu Detention Center, Ms. Yang developed severe high blood pressure, but was denied medical care, even when she passed out.

After Ms. Yang was transferred to Yangmahe Prison on April 22, 2011, nearly a year later, the guards forced her to take blood pressure medication, though she no longer had symptoms of high blood pressure. She then experienced discomfort and pain in her chest and abdominal area. Her eyes also hurt. The medical abuse Ms. Yang suffered is not an isolated event. Many Falun Gong practitioners have been subjected to similar mistreatment in China's detention facilities. The following article is another example: Healthy Falun Gong Practitioner Forced to Take Four Blood Pressure Medications Every Day for Over Two Years

Financial Persecution

The police ransacked Ms. Yang's home the day after her most recent arrest in July 2010. They confiscated all of her Falun Gong books, and video and audio materials. In addition, they took three thousand yuan in cash from her home. Moreover, during the three years of Mr. Yang's incarceration, her village authorities revoked her entire pension, totaling 43,590 yuan (the average social security pension is about 1,700 yuan per month). Prior to this latest arrest, Ms. Yang was detained many times for telling people about the persecution of Falun Gong. Altogether, the local authorities extorted around 10,000 yuan in illegal fines from her over the years.

Secret Trial

The Xinjin County Court secretly sentenced her to 3 years on April 7, 2011 without her family's knowledge. When her family members, including her sister and her daughter, went to the courtroom on the day and time that they had been told, no one was there. When they inquired about the trial, they were told, “It's over. She was taken away.” Later they learned that the secret trial had wrapped up in just a few minutes without any legal procedures and she was sentenced to three years in prison. Yang Yuhua was transferred to Yangmahe Prison 15 days later.

Torture and Forced Labor

While held at Longwangdu Detention Center, Ms. Yang was forced to clean the detention cells and restrooms three times a day. When she went on a hunger strike to protest the illegal detention, the police guards forbade other inmates to sleep to incite them to resent and mistreat her. Police guard Li Juan was most vicious and often verbally abused her. He said to Ms. Yang, “Your crime is worse than murder. You were sentenced by Chengdu Court!”

At Yangmahe Prison, the guards forced her to stand still for three days around the clock, and to sit on a small stool or long periods of time. In addition, she was forced to do intensive manual labor for at least 13 hours a day.

Her job involved putting hair-thin copper wires through tiny tubes, and each person had to finish over 10,000 pieces per day. Within days her eyes grew very sore and her vision became blurry. Even so, she was not allowed to rest. She developed serious eye damage, which did not begin to heal until months after her release on July 7, 2013.

Brainwashing and Pressure to Renounce Falun Gong

In addition to forced labor, Yang Yuhua and other Falun Gong practitioners were also subjected to brainwashing four times a week. They were forced to watch slanderous programs against Falun Gong and the founder of the practice, and then pressured to write the “three statements” renouncing Falun Gong. Those who refused to do so were tortured, including solitary confinement, being hung up, being beaten, the tiger bench and standing still for extended periods of time. Yang Yuhua is illiterate, so the guards drafted a statement and grabbed her hand to force her to fingerprint the statement.