64-Year-Old Woman Sentenced to Second Prison Term for Upholding Her Faith
(Minghui.org) A 64-year-old Falun Gong practitioner in Maanshan City, Anhui Province was recently sentenced to one year in prison and fined 8,000 yuan for refusing to give up her belief.
Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a mind and body improvement system that has been persecuted in China for the past 20 years.
Police Attempts to Keep Her in Detention Precede Arbitrary Sentencing
Ms. Yu Huamei's prison sentence was triggered by her arrest in September 2017 for distributing informational materials about Falun Gong. She was soon released on bail following her arrest, but the police later took her to do health examinations five times, in successive attempts to send her to a local detention center. She failed the physical examinations and was rejected by the detention center each time.
Six officers from Yushan Police Department broke into her home in October 2017 without identifying themselves. They confiscated her Falun Gong books and related materials. She was held at a hotel for the night before being taken to a hospital for a checkup the next morning. Her blood pressure remained too high for detention and she was sent home.
A few months later, the police deceived Ms. Yu into going to a hospital for a second checkup. She was released after the physical examination.
A clerk from Yushan District Court called Ms. Yu on January 31, 2019 and asked her to sign a document, which stated that she had given permission to the police to ransack her house. She said this wasn't true and refused to put her name on the document. A court officer arrived at her home and handcuffed her. He took her to the courthouse and locked her in the basement. Later she was taken to a hospital for a third checkup. She was released due to hypertension.
Ms. Yu was ordered to go through two more checkups, in March and April 2019, respectively. She was made to pay for the medical expenses in April, even though the checkup was performed against her will.
The judge handed down the prison sentence to her on July 11, 2019, without a trial.
This is the second time that Ms. Yu has been sentenced for her faith, which she credits for returning her to health. She had suffered from tuberculosis since she was young. After she took up Falun Gong in 1996, she stopped coughing up blood. Her fever and pain were gone. The chronic illness disappeared.
Since the persecution started in July 1999, Ms. Yu has been arrested multiple times for upholding her faith. She suffered various forms of abuse in a brainwashing center, a mental hospital, and later a prison.
Injected and Force-Fed with Unknown Nerve-damaging Drugs
Ms. Yu was taken to a brainwashing center by agents from Maanshan City 610 Office in September 2004. Because she refused to renounce Falun Gong at the end of the brainwashing session, she was subsequently transferred to the mental ward of Wuhu City 4th Hospital, where she was force fed and injected with unknown nerve damaging drugs.
Ms. Yu was forced to pay for her “hospital stay” from September 22 to October 13, which cost her 700 yuan.
She began to hide the pills and pretended to take them. The guards sometimes added the drugs to her water and food, so she forced herself to throw up after each meal and drank as little water as possible.
Physically Assaulted in Prison
Ms. Yu was sentenced to Suzhou Women’s Prison (now Anhui Province Women’s Prison) in 2008 with an unknown term. The guards instigated prisoners to torture her in their attempts to force her to give up Falun Gong. They slapped, kicked, and verbally abused her when she refused to memorize the prison rules. She was only allowed to sleep for three hours a day. The prisoners would publicly humiliate her by punching her in the chest repeatedly.
One inmate once threatened to stuff her mouth with soiled sanitary napkins if she refused to renounce Falun Gong.