7/12/01 (Falun Dafa Information Center) – A stocky, affable villager from Laishui County in Hebei Province has died after enduring prolonged beatings. Wu Yanshui, a Falun Gong practitioner from Dongyihe District, passed away on May 20th shortly after his release from a local detention center. He has become the 252nd known fatality in the escalating persecution against Falun Gong by the Chinese regime.Sources say local officials first tricked Wu in order to take him away from his home and then imprisoned him for a month in the village. They released him only after his family paid a fine of RMB 2,000 (the average monthly wage for a rural Chinese worker is about RMB 200).Because he would not give up his belief in Falun Dafa, Wu was taken to a local jail. His family went to ask for his release many times, but the officials refused to let him go. Liu Yaohua, Secretary of the Inspection Committee of the Public Security Department, told the family that they would have to pay a fine of RMB 20,000 or else Wu would be sent to a labor camp. His family was reportedly unable to pay this amount.Wu, who had previously been in excellent health, was sent to a detention center on December 27, 2000 where he was subjected to both mental and physical torture. At one point, he became delirious. Soon he was unable to walk or see, and he suffered congestive heart failure.Reliable sources say the police hastily agreed to release him on March 30, 2001 after five months' detention when his condition became critical. They nevertheless still fined his family RMB 5,000. But his release came too late. His injuries too severe, Wu Yanshui died on May 20, 2001.Sources indicate Laishui County officials have often used the excuse of "just attend a two or three day ‘reeducation’ session" to trick Falun Gong practitioners into leaving their homes so that they can easily arrest them and then extort money from their families. In many cases, the officials will take the money and then refuse to release the practitioner.Outside sources have often reported that many Falun Gong practitioners in the Laishui County Detention Center are forced to work more than 10 hours a day and that guards often hang practitioners up from wires and beat them. Sources say practitioners are sometimes forced onto the "Tiger Chair" torture device, which is known to cause excruciating pain, and that they are handcuffed and their feet are shackled. Other torture methods include beating practitioners using leather whips and wooden poles, and burning their mouths with cigarettes.