Chinese Name: 吴春兰Gender: FemaleAge: 57City: ChengduProvince: SichuanOccupation: Shop ownerDate of Death: July 10, 2020Date of Most Recent Arrest: September 9, 2016Most Recent Place of Detention: Qixian Detention Center
Ms. Wu Chunlan suffered a stroke and became paralyzed on one side of her body after being arrested in September 2016 for practicing Falun Gong. The Jintang County, Sichuan Province, woman was released on bail on January 2, 2017, only to learn that her seriously ill husband had passed away weeks earlier. Ms. Wu was sentenced to an eight-year prison term in July 2018 and ordered to serve time at home. After struggling with poor health herself for four years, she passed away in July 2020. She was 57 years old.
Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a spiritual discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999.
Ms. Wu was arrested on September 9, 2016, by over 20 armed officers, for filing a criminal complaint against Jiang Zemin, the former leader of the Chinese Communist Party who ordered the persecution in 1999.
Days before her arrest, the Chengdu City 610 Office, an extralegal agency created specifically to persecute Falun Gong, ordered police in its subordinate Jintang County to arrest Faun Gong practitioners who filed complaints against Jiang. Many practitioners were also harassed and ordered to sign statements, promising not to file complaints against Jiang.
Ms. Wu was held at the Pi County Police Station for one month before being transferred to the Qixian Detention Center in Jintang County. Her family frequented the detention center, but were never allowed to visit her.
Ms. Wu’s husband was seriously ill and had been receiving treatment in the hospital before she was arrested. Her arrest didn’t only deal her husband a heavy blow, but also affected the business of her two family-owned shops. Unable to afford the medical expense, her husband chose to stop the advanced treatment and opted for conservative treatment at home. He passed away three months later, on December 16, 2016. Their son went to the detention center and requested that Ms. Wu be allowed to attend her husband’s funeral, but the guards wouldn’t allow it. When her family later received a letter written by Ms. Wu on December 19, she was still asking about her husband’s situation, not knowing that he had passed away.
After Ms. Wu’s daughter-in-law took over the family business following her arrest, the police kept harassing the younger woman and caused tremendous mental distress for her. The police also worked with a lawyer to try to coerce her into persuading her mother-in-law to plead guilty in exchange for an earlier release.
Before her daughter-in-law had a chance to talk to Ms. Wu, she suffered a stroke on December 21, 2016 and was taken to the Chengdu City Hospital, which turned her away saying that they had run out of hospital beds. The police then took Ms. Wu to an intensive care unit in the Jintang County Hospital, which wasn’t as well-equipped as the hospital in Chengdu. The doctor said that even if she was resuscitated, she would be paralyzed for the rest of her life.
After Ms. Wu’s condition stabilized a few days later, she was transferred to a regular ward. During the entire time she was in the hospital, a police car was parked outside the hospital and plainclothes officers stayed in the hospital to monitor her.
When Ms. Wu was released on bail on January 2, 2017, she had lost sensation in half of her body. She later told her family that she was interrogated 21 times in a short three months.
Other local Falun Gong practitioners tried to visit her, but her family didn’t allow them, after being pressured by the police.
Despite Ms. Wu’s condition, the police still submitted her case to the Procuratorate. She was made to stand trial at the Jintang County Court on July 26, 2018 and sentenced to eight years, with a 10,000 yuan fine. The judge allowed her to serve time at home and ordered her to report to a person in charge of persecuting Falun Gong at the Zhao Town Government in Jintang County every month.
Ms. Wu was found unconscious at home early on the morning of July 1, 2020. She was taken to the hospital and passed away nine days later, on July 10.
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