(Minghui.org) A woman in her 50s sometimes can be spotted on the streets of Huludao City, Liaoning Province, collecting recyclables, even eating food from garbage cans. Her name is Zhu Yun. When she was released in 2020 after serving six years for her faith in Falun Gong, she had developed mental disorders due to involuntary drug administration and torture in prison.
Ms. Zhu has had an up-and-down life during the past over 20 years. She became a design engineer after graduating from college in 1989. She also enjoyed a happy marriage. But her health went downhill after she gave birth to her child in 1992. She did not have the strength to work and relied on medicine to keep her life going. She took up Falun Gong, an ancient spiritual and meditation practice, in 1997, and fully recovered shortly afterward.
However, her renewed happy life ended in two years after the persecution of Falun Gong began in 1999. She was given the forced labor term of one and a half years after going to Beijing to appeal for justice for Falun Gong in October 2000.
During her labor camp term, Ms. Zhu was subjected to intensive brainwashing and constantly ordered to renounce Falun Gong. Sometimes she was deprived of sleep and forced to squat or sit on a small stool for long hours.
Because she held fast to Falun Gong, the authorities extended her term by five months and released her in September 2002. She wasn’t allowed to go home but was taken to a brainwashing center set up by her workplace. She was held there for another month. Since she still refused to renounce Falun Gong, she was fired from work shortly after. Due to pressure from the persecution, her husband also divorced her.
Ms. Zhu later married Mr. Huang Lizhong, also a Falun Gong practitioner, in 2006. Unfortunately, he was arrested in August 2008 and persecuted to death in prison two years later, in October 2010, at the age of 45.
She once again lost her family. In 2014, she was arrested again and later sentenced to six years, which eventually caused her to suffer a mental breakdown.
Latest Arrest and Prison Sentence
Led by police chief Chen Yulong of Huludao City Domestic Security Division, a group of police arrived at Ms. Zhu’s apartment on July 24, 2014. They climbed up a ladder to get into her home on the sixth floor and arrested her. Another five practitioners, Ms. Wang Yingzhi, Ms. Gu Fengli, Mr. Xing Jiaqiu, Ms. Zhang Xiuying, and Mr. Gao Zuokui, were arrested on the same day.
The Lianshan District Court in Huludao City held a hearing of the case against the six practitioners on September 21, 2015. Prosecutor Li Qingyan charged them with “undermining the implementation of law with a cult,” a standard pretext used to criminalize Falun Gong practitioners, and used the confiscated Falun Gong books and materials as prosecution evidence against them.
Four attorneys entered not guilty pleas for the practitioners. They argued that their clients had the freedom of belief and they didn’t violate any law by owning Falun Gong materials. Furthermore, all prosecution evidence, especially books and CDs, must be physically presented in the court, as required by law. The prosecutor only provided the photos of the items, thus rendering the prosecution evidence inadmissible.
The attorneys argued that the prosecutor failed to show how the defendants undermined law enforcement to cause damage. The attorneys pointed out that their clients’ freedom of religious belief is protected by the Constitution and that they shouldn’t be subjected to prosecution at all.
All six practitioners denied the charges and demanded acquittal. The judge adjourned the hearing and issued the verdict four days later: Ms. Zhu was sentenced to six years, Ms. Wang to four and a half years, Mr. Xing to three and a half years, Ms. Zhang to three years, Ms. Gu to one and a half years, and Mr. Gao to one year and three months.
Injected with Unknown Drugs in Prison
Ms. Zhu was incarcerated in Liaoning Province Women’s Prison. Because she refused to renounce her faith, she was placed in a cell full of felons, most of whom were sentenced to life. The guards instigated them to monitor and torture her. Anyone who "transformed" a practitioner would be rewarded with a reduction in their term. When the inmates beat Ms. Zhu, she shouted for help. But the guards only reprimanded the inmates verbally without really punishing them.
Two inmates monitored Ms. Zhu around the clock and followed her everywhere she went. They did not allow her to talk to anyone. When she walked, one inmate was in front of her and the other behind her. When she sat down, they flanked her on both sides. She was also forced to squat on the floor in the washroom when others went to bed after 9 p.m. The concrete floor was wet, so she could not sit. Shortly after, she began a hunger strike to protest the mistreatment.
Three days later, she was forced to have an IV infusion. It has been extensively documented by Minghui.org that Falun Gong practitioners have been subjected to injections of unknown drugs that damaged the central nervous system and caused mental disorders, especially in the notorious Liaoning Province Women’s Prison.
Ms. Zhu pulled out the needle whenever there was a chance, or moved her arms back and forth to stop the injection. But the guards noticed it and handcuffed her to the bed to prevent her from moving anymore.
Ms. Zhu began to suffer memory loss after a few days of IV infusion. She giggled uncontrollably, unable to stop once she started. With she was confined in bed, the guards left one of her arms bare outside of the quilt. On the cold winter nights, her arm was so cold that she couldn’t fall asleep. Later, she became dull-witted, with dull eyes.
After more than a year of hunger strike, she became emaciated, weighing only 100 pounds, down from her original weight of 145 pounds. The prison doctor feared that she may die and checked if she was still alive every night.
Later she was transferred to the hospital ward, where she had to stay at her cell all day long, including doing her labor work of packaging cotton swabs into small plastic bags. She and many inmates were forced to get up at 5:10 a.m. and started working before dawn. Their meals only had boiled vegetables with worms floating around and no taste. They had to buy pickled vegetables and fermented bean curd in order to have some sodium in their food. They had to work after dinner until 9:00 p.m.
In addition to surveillance monitors, the guards also stood at the cell door to watch them. Ms. Zhu was more strictly monitored by the guards and inmates. She was not allowed to speak freely to anyone, and especially not allowed to talk about Falun Gong.
The inmates summed up the situation in prison: they got up earlier than chickens, ate pig food, did more work than water buffaloes, and had to be more loyal than dogs.
When Ms. Zhu was released on December 23, 2019, she was not able to take care of herself. Her mind was not clear and she had poor memory. Once she went out and was unable to find her way home. Someone asked the police to help her get home. Losing her ability to work, she collects recyclables to make a living.
She was unable to recall her detailed suffering in the prison due to her mental state. According to practitioner Ms. Han Ying, who was in the prison at the same time as her, she once saw Ms. Zhu drooling. One inmate once pointed at Ms. Zhu and threatened Ms. Han, “She is like that because of the psychiatric drugs. If you don’t give up, they will do the same to you and say you are mentally ill.”
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