(Minghui.org) Wang Xuebin, an 86-year-old man in Fuyang City, Anhui Provinc, was secretly sentenced to 2.5 years in 2014 for practicing his faith Falun Gong, following an arrest in 2012. Because the local detention center refused to admit Mr. Wang Xuebin due to his advanced age, the court allowed him to go home and said his case was concluded.
The police, however, took him back into custody in September 2017, when he was still recovering from surgery. Mr. Wang was made to serve the full term of 2.5 years (minus the 112 days he spent in custody in 2012).
Below is Mr. Wang’s account.
My name is Wang Xuebin. I’m 86 this year. I was born in Fuyang City, Anhui Province. After I graduated from college in 1962, I landed a job at the Fuyang Tractor Factory as a foundry technician. Given my excellent work performance, I was soon promoted to workshop manager and later took up the leadership role in the factory.
Health Improves After Practicing Falun Gong
Due to my intense work schedule, poor working environment and exposure to toxic substances, I developed multiple ailments and couldn’t continue working. I retired in 1995 at the age of 58. I sought many treatments, but instead of seeing any improvement, I developed more problems, including long-term insomnia, rheumatism, a frozen shoulder, neck problems, and joint deformity. I relied on painkillers to get me through each day.
One day, I shared with my second son that I lost hope in life. He was saddened to hear it. Days later, he told me that the principals of two local elementary schools experienced tremendous health improvement after they began practicing Falun Gong and he urged me to give it a try. I was curious and found a local practice site.
After doing the exercises for a few days, I slept much better and did not need the sleeping pills. I became hopeful and went to the practice site every day. After a few months, all of my symptoms were gone. I experienced the feeling of being illness-free again after so many years.
My wife was a doctor. She had surgery to treat her lumbar disc herniation and was bedridden for four months afterwards. She got better later, only to fall. Her slipped disc worsened. Further treatments alleviated her symptoms somewhat, but she became too ill to work and ended up retiring at the age of 48. To support the family, she later opened a family clinic near our home, only to develop Parkinson’s syndrome shortly afterwards and was forced to shut down the clinic.
After seeing my improvement from practicing Falun Gong, she also joined me in the practice in August 1998 and soon regained her health as well. Now at the age of 85, she is still very healthy and energetic.
Since her health improved, my wife re-opened her clinic. The purpose wasn’t to make money, but to contribute to the community. She charged very low fees and sometimes treated patients for free. I cleaned the streets and repaired the road in our community. People all know that we enjoyed better health and became better people because we practiced Falun Gong. They all supported us and the community did not harass us despite the on-going persecution. The local TV station even interviewed me in 2011 about the good deeds I did and featured me in a program for two days.
On May 27, 2012, I heard about the arrest of a practitioner that I knew, Ms. Liu Cui. Her husband divorced her after having an extra-marital affair. She and her two daughters then moved in with her widowed father in his 80s, who lived in Woyang County. After her arrest, I thought I should pay her father a visit to comfort him.
As soon as I left Ms. Liu’s home, I was pushed down from the back by police and carried into their police car. They took me to the Woyang County Police Department, about 90 miles from Fuyang. They body searched me and confiscated the cash I had. At 9 p.m., they took me to the Woyang County Detention Center. Due to my advanced age, the guards refused to admit me and the police had to take me back to the police station, where I was held overnight.
I questioned the police and asked why they arrested me when I simply visited Woyang on personal business. An officer named Jia Yutao said that he had been the police director for eight years and was never able to arrest a Falun Gong practitioner. Upon finding out that I was a friend of Ms. Liu’s, he arrested me and attempted to make a big case about us.
With the police chief’s approval the next day, the Woyang County Detention Center agreed to admit me to serve a 30-day detention. The police threatened to starve me when I refused to sign the detention notice.
I wrote a complaint against the police chief and gave it to Jia. He told me, “Our police chief is a member of the County Party Committee. How dare you file a complaint against him?”
Seven days later, I was transferred to the Bozhou City Detention Center. (Bozhou oversees Woyang County.) Due to the poor living conditions and abuse by the guards, my condition became critical twice and the detention center director personally approved my release to get medical treatment. I returned home on September 16, 2012.
I heard from my wife that on May 28, the day after my arrest, Cui Tao, the head of Woyang County Domestic Security Office, and dozens of officers raided our home. My Falun Gong books, 20,000 yuan in cash, and our bank cards associated with our pension accounts were confiscated. My wife and I contacted the police twice and demanded the return of the cash and bank cards, but to no avail. I was almost arrested again when I went to the Bozhou City Police Department to submit my complaint.
In early 2014, a presiding judge surnamed Zhao of the Woyang County Court came to my home with my second son and informed me that I was scheduled to appear in court soon. I was told that I would be appointed a lawyer, but no lawyer contacted me.
Six other practitioners stood trial with me. Each of us was only allowed one family member at the hearing. During the one-hour-long hearing, judge Zhao did not allow us to defend ourselves, and we could only answer “yes” or “no” to their questions. Three days after the hearing, I wrote a defense statement and submitted it to judge Zhao. When I urged him to follow the law and uphold justice for me and the other practitioners, he said, “Jiang Zemin (the former Communist Party head who ordered the persecution) is the country’s chairman. Who dares to defy his order to persecute Falun Gong?”
A few months after the hearing, I was summoned to the court for the sentencing hearing. Three of the other practitioners who stood trial with me were also there. Officer Cui Tao drove the four of us to a hospital for physical examinations and took us back to the court afterwards. We were then made to wait. At 6 p.m., judge Zhao came and said that he had no say in our case. Instead the verdict would be announced by the Political and Legal Affairs Committee (an extra-judiciary agency tasked with overseeing the persecution).
Officer Cui and judge Zhao then took me and the other three practitioners to a local detention center in two cars. I rode with Cui. I refused to step inside after we got there, and the detention center director also firmly declined to accept me. At 11 p.m., Cui took me back to the court. Judge Zhao, who had also returned, said to me, “Your case is over now.” He asked my son, who was summoned to the court earlier, to sign a document and I was allowed to go home.
Taken Back into Custody in 2017
For the next three years, I never heard from the court. But on September 27, 2017, just as I was discharged from the hospital and was still bedridden, the police came to monitor me. Then three days later, over ten people from the police station and the Woyang County Court arrived in an ambulance. They said that they were taking me to the hospital for a physical examination. My wife demanded to go with me, but they did not allow her. I was placed on a stretcher and carried out. When we arrived at the destination, they announced that I was officially arrested. It then occurred to me that I had been taken to Suzhou Prison, instead of a hospital.
I found a prison director the next day and asked him what was going on. He said he handled my case himself and that I was sentenced to 2.5 years following my earlier arrest on May 27, 2012. He added that I already served 112 days in the detention center (from May 27, 2012 to September 16, 2012) and I had two years and two months to serve.
I later learned from my family that the authorities refused to reveal my whereabouts after I was taken away in an ambulance. My family made dozens of phone calls to various agencies in Fuyang City, Bozhou City and Woyang County, but no one told them anything. A week later, an agent of the national security bureau called them and said that because the 19th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party was going to be held between October 18 and 24, 2017, they arrested all “suspects out on bail,” including me.
Pension Still Suspended
After I was released on December 4, 2019, I went to the social security bureau to have my pension reinstated—it was suspended while I was incarcerated. They asked to see my verdict. When I went to the Woyang County Court to demand a copy, they claimed they already gave me one.
I also went to the Woyang County Police Department and demanded the police return the cash confiscated during my arrest in 2012. The front desk security stopped me at the gate and said that I wasn’t allowed to meet with the police chief. I called the police chief after I returned home, but never heard back from them.
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