Yu Zhongzhu, 39, Heilonjiang

Name: Yu Zhongzhu (于忠柱)
Gender: Male
Age: 39
Occupation: Guyuan Forestry Farm employee
Date of Most Recent Arrest:  August 8, 2008
Date of Most Recent Release: Died in custody
Date of Death: January 14, 2010
Province: Heilongjiang
City: Daxinganling
Address: Guyuan Town, Songling District, Daxinganling City, Heilongjiang Province (黑龙江省大兴安岭松岭区古源镇)
Most Recent Place of Detention: Heilongjiang Province Tailai Prison (黑龙江省泰来监狱)


Case Details:

On the evening of August 8, 2008, the day the Beijing Olympics opened, over a dozen agents from the local police and 610 Office (link), abducted Yu, his wife Ms. Sun Lijuan, and six other Falun Gong practitioners from Guyuan and Hanjiayuan. Domestic Security Chief Wang Jingkai and the 610 Office chief Guang Congrong were among the officers involved.

On December 22, 2008, the eight were “sentenced” in sham trials to prison terms ranging from three to six years. Judge Li Hengjiang from Hanjiayuan Court gave Mr. Yu a six-year term because of his identity as a Falun Gong practitioner.

On April 27, 2009, Mr. Yu was taken to Tailai Prison, where he was reportedly abused in custody.

On January 14, 2010, Mr. Yu's family received a call from the prison authorities, asking them to go to the facility's hospital because Mr. Yu was in critical condition. Upon arriving at the prison, Yu’s relatives were prevented from carrying cameras or cell phones into the facility. They witnessed Yu’s death at 10pm that evening. The authorities cremated Yu’s body two days later, before an autopsy could be conducted and without the family’s permission.

Yu’s case was one of over 800 incidents of long prison sentences meted out to Falun Gong practitioners since early 2008 that the Falun Dafa Information Center reported in December 2009 (report).

For more information, see also: Falun Dafa Information Center: "Prisoner of Conscience Detained on Olympics Opening Day Dies in Prison," January 26, 2010.