(Minghui.org) Ms. Zhao Guiyou, a Falun Gong practitioner, 53, is from the Xiangyang District, Hegang City, Heilongjiang Province. She started to practice Falun Gong in 1996 and recovered from multiple health problems including low blood pressure.

Since the onset of the persecution by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in 1999, Ms. Zhao was arrested, detained several times, sentenced to prison, and tortured, for refusing to give up her belief in Falun Gong.

Arrested and Detained Many Times

Ms. Zhao Guiyou witnessed the Chinese state-controlled television programs that slandered Falun Gong since July 22, 1999. Therefore, she, her 9-year-old daughter and Ms. Li Xiuyun, a fellow practitioner decided to go to Beijing and appeal for justice for Falun Gong. They were arrested at the local train station by officers from the Hubin Police Station and Ms. Zhao and Ms. Li were detained for over half-a-month.

Ms. Zhao was arrested and taken to the local police station in early 2000. After refusing to sign a document that called for her to stop practicing and not appealing for Falun Gong, she was illegally detained in the No.1 Detention Center of Hegang City. She was released at the end of 2000.

Several police officers broke into Ms. Zhao's home and attempted to arrest her in April 2002, but she escaped. She had to stay away from her home for over a year to avoid being arrested.

Tortured by Police

About 50 practitioners, including Ms. Zhao Guiyou, were arrested during a large scale arrest by officers from the Xiangyang District Police Department on September 7, 2005. Ms. Zhao's home was ransacked. Three female police officers strip searched her.

She was taken to the Xiangyang District Police Department where she was brutally beaten. A police officer pulled her by her hair and slammed her head against the wall. She was tied up with a rope. Another officer viciously stepped on her feet and kicked her leg with his leather shoes. She could not walk after she was beaten and it took over two months for her to recover.

Ms. Zhao Guiyou was carried by a male inmate to the No. 2 Detention Center and then transferred to the No. 1 Detention Center.

She was cuffed to a metal chair and and interrogated by six police officers. The officers took turns interrogating her. She was unable to move during interrogation, and not allowed to sleep for two days and nights.

“Carrying a Sword on the Back” Torture

They tormented her with the torture method “Carrying a Sword on the Back.” One hand was pulled to the back over the shoulder and the other hand was pulled to the back close to the waist. The two hands were pulled until they could be handcuffed and then bottles were inserted between her back and the handcuffs. The handcuff deeply cut into the flesh. Her hands were numb for over two months after she was released from that torture.

Torture Illustration - “Carrying a Sword on the Back”

Head Covered with a Plastic Bag and “Three Rings of Handcuff” Torture

They covered her head with a plastic bag and she almost suffocated.

On multiple occasions, several practitioners and Ms. Zhao were tortured with the “Three Rings of Handcuff” torture method in which both hands and one foot were cuffed together for up to six days.

Sentenced to Prison by the Xiangyang District Court

Ms. Zhao Guiyou and fellow practitioners were sentenced to four years in prison by the Xiangyang District Court on June 13, 2006. They appealed to the municipal intermediate court, which upheld the original sentences.

Ms. Zhao, Ms. Liu Liping and Ms. Hu Guijie were taken to the Heilongjiang Province Women's Prison at the end of September 2006. They were cuffed to long metal chains and brutally beaten during the transfer to the prison.

Several inmates in the Assembly Division were assigned to meet the practitioners upon their arrival. The inmates duct-taped their mouths and put prison uniforms on them. They were monitored around the clock and even followed to the restroom. They were forced to watch slanderous programs about Falun Gong during the day and deprived of sleep. This was to force them to renounce their belief in Falun Gong. There were other torture methods, including to stand upright without moving for a long time.

While being subjected to forced labor, they were deprived of sleep and forced to work until they met their quota.

Ms. Zhao Guiyou was released at the end of 2008.