American man alleges torture during stay in Chinese prison

SAN FRANCISCO – An American Falun Gong practitioner who was released after serving a three-year sentence in a Chinese prison last week is speaking out against the government that imprisoned him.

Charles Li, 41, of Menlo Park was scheduled to hold a news conference Tuesday in San Francisco to discuss the mistreatment he received in prison, where Falun Gong organizers allege Li was subject to “beatings, brainwashing, torture and forced labor.”

Li, who arrived in San Francisco on Saturday, was arrested at the Yangzhou airport in January 2003 and sentenced two months later on charges of sabotaging broadcasting equipment.

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Falun Gong attracted millions of followers during the 1990s with its routines of light exercises and a philosophy based on Buddhism, Taoism and traditional Chinese thought. It was banned in 1999 following a mass protest outside the main government compound in Beijing.

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Jan. 25, 2006
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Religion News Blog posted this on Wednesday January 25, 2006.
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