Interior Designer Arrested for His Faith
Yubo Zhao is a 39 year old self-made interior designer and lives with his father in Anshan, Liaoning Province. In July 1997, when he was 14 years old, he began to practice Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, because its profound teachings and universal principles of Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance deeply moved him.
In 2000, a year after the Chinese Communist Party started persecuting Falun Gong, Zhao went to the municipal government to appeal. He was 17 years old at the time and only wished to speak up for the spiritual practice. However, he was arrested and forced to write a letter promising that he would not go to Beijing to seek justice for Falun Gong.
After that, he constantly faced harassment by the police, local community, and at school. The school authorities threatened to expel him if he did not renounce Falun Gong. Feeling that he had no other choice, Mr. Zhao withdrew from school and pursued education at home on his own.
While Zhao was no longer subject to threats of expulsion, the police continued to harass him regularly.
On September 21, 2022, a plainclothes officer had knocked on Zhao’s door, claiming to be looking for an elderly woman. Zhao’s father did not permit entry to the officer as he did not have evidence that the elderly woman was in their house. As a result, the officer forcefully entered, called for reinforcements, and ransacked the house. Zhao, his father, uncle, and a visiting family friend were arrested.
Zhao was illegally detained at the Shannan Police Station for two days before he was transferred to the Xiuyan Detention Center. His father, uncle, and his father’s friend were subject to 30 hours of detention with no food or water. After their release, his father was further placed on residential surveillance.
When his house was ransacked, Zhao’s work computer, a broken printer, Falun Gong books, ID, cellphone, 6,400 US dollars, 18,000 yuan, and other personal belongings were confiscated. His family went to the police station several times to demand a list of the confiscated items, but the police ignored them. However, the police did give Zhao a list of seized items to sign, but the quantity was inaccurate, so he refused to sign it.
On the day of his arrest, Zhao’s mother called him to break the news of his grandmother’s passing. However, she was devastated to learn that he had been arrested earlier that day. Unable to cope, she became bedridden.
A Young Man’s Transformation
Zhao was introverted, passive, and rebellious in his childhood. But when he started practicing Falun Gong at 14 years old, he transformed into an outgoing, warm, and supportive person. His academic performance also quickly improved, and he became well-respected by his classmates.
When the persecution started in 1999, the sentiments of the people who were initially impressed with his behavior changed.
Despite the pressure of the persecution, Zhao stayed resilient. In the face of police harassment and state-run propaganda that had attempted to silence him, Zhao is known by neighbors to be positive and friendly to all.
Perpetrators’ Contact Information:
Sun Rui (孙瑞), Head of Shannan Police Station: +86-15842077229
Li Haoyuan (李昊远), Deputy Head of Shannan Police Station: +86-13942245066
Shen Geng (申庚), Director of Tiexi Domestic Security Office: +86-15942222000
Wang Jianjun (王建军), Secretary of Anshan City Political and Legal Affairs Committee: +86-13188018801, +86-412-2234579, +86-412-811101
Based on an original Minghui article.