(Minghui.org) A 70-year-old resident of Dalian City, Liaoning Province, was recently sentenced to three years in prison for practicing Falun Gong, a mind-body practice that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.

Ms. Xu Changlan was arrested on July 4, 2019, after being reported for distributing Falun Gong informational materials. The police ransacked her home and took her to the Yaojia Detention Center. She has appealed the verdict to the Dalian City Intermediate Court.

Prior to her latest sentence, Ms. Xu had been repeatedly arrested during the past 20 years for not renouncing her faith, which she credits for curing her severe heart condition, low blood pressure, and uterine fibroids. 

She was tortured while serving three years in a labor camp and another three years in prison.

Recent Arrests

Ms. Xu was arrested one time each year between 2015 and 2018. The reasons included filing a criminal complaint against Jiang Zemin, former head of the communist regime, for ordering the persecution of Falun Gong; as well as talking to people about Falun Gong.

The police ransacked her home during almost every arrest and held her for days at local detention facilities.

Sentenced to 3 Years, Deprived of Sleep

Prior to her arrests in recent years, Ms. Xu was arrested on April 19, 2012, for distributing informational materials about Falun Gong. After spending 11 months at Dalian City Detention Center, she was sentenced to 3 years and taken to Liaoning Women’s Prison on March 19, 2013.

The guards initially forced her to stand from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. for 6 days and then extended the punishment to the full day. After standing for days without sleep, her feet and legs were severely swollen, and she passed out.

The guards continued to deprive her of sleep. She was forced to write a statement renouncing Falun Gong against her will.

One Year of Forced Labor Precedes Prison Sentence

Ms. Xu's prison sentence was preceded by one year of forced labor, which followed her arrest on April 23, 2009. The police manacled her to a chair for two days before taking her to a detention center. She was not accepted given her heart condition, and the police forced her family to pay a 6,000-yuan bond before releasing her on bail. 

She was later given one year of forced labor but was ordered to serve time outside of the labor camp.

Abused While Serving First Forced Labor Term

Ms. Xu's forced labor term in 2009 followed an earlier term in 2000.

She was arrested in October 1999 and detained for 45 days for going to Beijing to appeal for the right to practice Falun Gong. She returned to Beijing to appeal in December 2000 and was arrested at Tiananmen Square.

Because she refused to reveal her name and address to the police, they stripped her, took off her shoes and socks, and forced her to stand outdoors on ice for five hours. Her feet became numb afterwards.

An officer threatened to leave her outside at night if she still didn’t tell them her name. Out of fear, she gave her personal information and was taken to Shunyi Detention Center.

Torture illustration: Freezing

Ms. Xu was given three years at Panjin Forced Labor Camp after she was taken back to her hometown. 

Six guards once took her to a room and tried to force her to kneel. When she refused, they shocked her with electric batons and hit her chest and back with a rubber stick. They also grabbed her hair, hit her head against a wall, and kicked her knees.

Four guards then pressed her against the ground. One guard sat on her, slapped her face, and hit her head against the concrete floor. She bled from her forehead as a result.

When Ms. Xu still refused to write a statement renouncing Falun Gong, even under torture, the guards cuffed her hands. Then a guard sat on her legs again, slapped her face, and verbally abused her.

Later the guards transferred Ms. Xu to a warehouse. They chained one of her hands to a window frame and the other hand to the heater against the wall. Her chest was pressed against the heater, and she could not stand up or squat down. She soon fainted.

Torture reenactment: Locked in awkward position

Related report in Chinese:被劳教、判刑迫害-大连市徐长兰控告江泽民