(Minghui.org) A 59-year-old woman in Jingzhou City, Hubei Province was sentenced to two years in October 2019 for her faith in Falun Gong and admitted to Hubei Province Women's Prison in January 2020. 

By the time she was released on July 10, 2020, Ms. Wang Qiong had lost about 35 pounds because of the torture she suffered during her six months' incarceration in the prison. Two of her ribs were also broken and she lost a tooth. Her blood pressure was high and her feet and legs swollen. She also had difficulty breathing, as well as severe liver cysts and gallstones.

This was not the first time that Ms. Wang has been targeted for her faith. Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is an ancient spiritual and meditation discipline that has been persecuted by the Chinese communist regime since 1999. Because Ms. Wang stayed steadfast in her faith, she has been arrested several times, given two labor camp terms and held in brainwashing centers three times, in addition to her latest prison term. 

Latest Sentencing

Ms. Wang was approached by three officers while taking a break on a side walk with her friend Ms. Ma Shijun on June 20, 2017. The police searched their bags and after discovering materials related to Falun Gong, they arrested both women and took them to the Jiangling County Detention Center.

Two days after Ms. Wang and Ms. Ma were questioned by prosecutors from Jiangling County Procuratorate, the police came to the detention center on July 19, 2017 and said their cases weren’t approved. Both of them were released on bail the next morning without being asked to pay the bail bond.

While the two practitioners thought that was the end of their case, the police nevertheless arrested Ms. Wang again at around 6 a.m. on August 12, 2018, when she went out grocery shopping. Ms. Ma was also arrested on the same day. Both of their homes were ransacked as well.

During the 1.5 years of incarceration at Jingzhou District Detention Center, Ms. Wang was subjected to constant brainwashing and ordered to give up Falun Gong. She upheld her faith and refused to comply.

Ms. Wang and Ms. Ma were tried by the Jiangling County Court on August 9, 2019. Ms. Wang refused to accept the court-appointed lawyers who were instructed to enter a guilty plea for her. Instead, she acted as her own lawyer and entered a not guilty plea. 

The judge sentenced Ms. Wang to two years with a 10,000-yuan fine and Ms. Ma to one year and eight months with an 8,000-yuan fine in October 2019. 

After the Jingzhou City Intermediate Court rejected their appeals and upheld their sentences in December 2019, Ms. Wang was taken to the Hubei Province Women’s Prison in January 2020. Ms. Ma remained in Ximen Detention Center and was released around April 2020.

Torture in the Hubei Province Women’s Prison

During the six months Ms. Wang served time in the prison, she was held in the strict management ward. Because she stayed firm in her faith, the prison authorities arranged four monitoring teams to persecute her. 

As soon as she was admitted to the prison, she was forced to stand for long hours and recite prison rules. The guards also ordered her to admit she was guilty and write statements to renounce Falun Gong. 

On the second day, a group of inmates pushed her to the corner in the restroom without a surveillance camera. They beat her and stuffed a rag used to clean the restroom into her mouth. In order to instigate all the other inmates in her cell to persecute her, the lead inmate forced all 20 inmates to stand with Ms. Wang, while keeping their head down and looking at their feet.

Except for the inmates assigned to monitor Falun Gong practitioners, no one was allowed to talk to them or even help them, or they would be punished themselves.

The inmates beat Ms. Wang at will in order to force her into submission. In addition to constantly putting filthy rags into her mouth and forcing her to stand for long hours, they pulled her hair, beat and kicked her, and slapped her in the face with a shoe. One inmate threatened to put a used sanitary napkin into her mouth or force-feed her with urine and feces.

Ms. Wang was also starved and not given enough daily necessities, including toothbrush, clothes hangers, soap, or toilet paper. She had to do all of her washing with one towel. Without toilet paper, she had to clean herself with wet socks, which made her skin chapped.

At night, after one day of standing, the inmates didn’t allow her to sleep well and woke her up every ten minutes. They also cursed her with foul language. 

On March 18, 2020, the inmates made another attempt to force Ms. Wang to write statements to renounce Falun Gong. After she refused, they dragged her to an area without a surveillance camera and beat her. One person pulled her hair and threw her against the corner of the metal rail of the bed. This caused two of her ribs to break. When the inmates forcibly stuffed a rag into her mouth and slapped her in the face, she lost a tooth, vomited blood, had difficulty breathing, and then passed out.

Ms. Wang reported to the prison guards several times that she had stabbing pain in the right side of her back and requested that she go to a hospital for a medical checkup. The guards ignored her request and blamed her for pretending to be sick. They continued to force her to stand every day and bend over to clean the floor. 

When Ms. Wang had a checkup after she was released on July 10, she was found to have severe liver cysts and gallstones.

The perpetrators involved in Ms. Wang's persecution included the following inmates:

Xu Hui, a lead inmate, who is from Jingshan, Hubei Province, and serving time for dealing drugs.

Shen Yongbao is from Wuhan City, Hubei Province. She was assigned to “transform Falun Gong practitioners.” She was jailed for the crime of corruption.

Chen Zhizhen is from Yinshan County, Hubei Province. She was jailed for the crime of corruption.

Chen Hui is from Wuhan City, Hubei Province. She was a drug dealer.

Lui Hui, 23, was a strong woman who often beat practitioners. She was jailed for the crime of fraud.

Xiao Fang is from Wuhan City, Hubei Province. She was also a drug dealer.

Zhou Jiaohua is from Hanchuan County, Hubei Province. She was jailed for fraud.