70-Year-Old Man Arrested for the 9th Time for His Belief

Falun Gong practitioner Mr. Zhang Shanming from Zhucheng City, Shandong Province was recently arrested for the ninth time.

He was taken into police custody on the evening of May 12th for putting up stickers with messages that said “Falun Gong is good” in public. His home was ransacked, and he is being held at the Zhucheng City Detention Centre.

His family went to the Zhucheng City Police Department and the Zhucheng Domestic Security Division on June 2nd to try to secure his release. The police told them that he would be released in a week, but that has yet to be confirmed.

Mr. Zhang, 70, is from the village of Dongtuan. He recovered from stomach cancer after beginning to practise Falun Gong in January 1997. Because of his belief, the local police and Communist Party officials have targeted him since the persecution of Falun Gong began. He has been repeatedly arrested and unjustly detained. His most recent arrest marks the ninth time in the past 16 years.

Mr. Zhang's Ordeal

Mr. Zhang was closely monitored by village officials soon after the peaceful protest of April 25th, 1999, and prohibited from leaving the village. The police also harassed him at home multiple times a day.

When the persecution started in July 1999, all the Falun Gong practitioners from his village were rounded up and forced to watch television programmes that slandered Falun Gong. Mr. Zhang decided to go to Beijing and appeal for the right to practise.

Mr. Zhang and his wife Ms. Wang Zhaoshuang went to Beijing in January 2000 and were arrested immediately. After they were taken back to Zhucheng City, the local police handcuffed the couple and shocked them with electric batons. Ms. Wang was stripped to her underwear and beaten until she was covered in injuries and bruises.

Ms. Wang was released after she had 3,000 yuan1 extorted from her. Mr. Zhang was detained for a month.

That autumn, the village Party office deceived the couple and detained them for eight days.

Mr. Zhang, his wife, and their daughter-in-law with a seven-month-old baby went to Beijing at the end of 2000 to appeal for the right to practise. As soon as they shouted “Falun Dafa is good” on Tiananmen Square, the police took them away. Mr. Zhang was beaten, and all four were detained.

The older couple went on a hunger strike after being taken back to Zhucheng City, and were released after four days. Three days later, however, Mr. Zhang was arrested again. Without following any legal procedures, the village officials detained him for a month. He was starved and beaten.

Mr. Zhang was arrested twice over the next two years. While in Qingdao City in the summer of 2001, he was arrested by village Party secretary Wang Jinxiu and detained for five days. On February 1st, 2003, the local police ransacked Mr. Zhang's home and confiscated his Falun Gong books. He was detained for a month and tortured.

Between 2008 and 2011, Mr. Zhang was arrested three times. On May 12th, 2008, Developmental District Police Station officers ransacked his home and arrested him. He was beaten in his own home and dragged to the police car. He was released later that night.

The police failed to arrest Mr. Zhang in March 2009. They broke into his home in the morning on March 18 and went back in the afternoon, but couldn't find him. His 94-year-old mother was interrogated and terrified. The officers also combed through his neighbours' houses. Mr. Zhang was arrested two years later, in July 2011.

The arrests have distressed his mother, and her health has declined. Mr. Zhang's son was arrested on February 20, 2008 and charged with providing transportation for Falun Gong practitioners.

Recovery from Cancer

Mr. Zhang started practising Falun Gong in January 1997, after a surgery to remove part of his stomach due to cancer was unsuccessful. By doing the exercises and living according the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, he quickly recovered.

His wife Ms. Wang used to suffer from many ailments and was very thin. After she started practising Falun Gong, she regained her health.

Perpetrators' Contact Information:

Zhao Yude (赵玉德), Zhucheng City Police Department Party Committee: +86-536-6328001 (Office), +86-13705361169 (Mobile), +86-18678085678 (Mobile)
Guo Guangcai (郭广才), Zhucheng City Police Department Party Committee: +86-536-6328002 (Office), +86-13665368086 (Mobile), +86-18663661113 (Mobile)
Lu Jianhua (鹿建华), Zhucheng City Domestic Security Division: +86-536-6328121 (Office), +86-13705360501 (Mobile), +86-18678085278 (Mobile)
Wang Shoufeng (王首峰), Developmental District Police Station: +86-536-6565631 (Office), +86-18366313766 (Mobile), +86-18678085319 (Mobile)
Wu Fenghuan (吴凤桓), Developmental District Police Station: +86-13306467677 (Mobile), +86-18678085051 (Mobile)
Zhang Ke (张可), Developmental District Police Station: +86-13516380888 (Mobile), +86-18678085322 (Mobile)


1. "Yuan" is the Chinese currency; 500 yuan is equal to the average monthly income of an urban worker in China.

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