As we sat in the cafe of a smart hotel, the beefy man beside me disclosed how he beat, brutalised and tortured scores of men and women who had been seized by Chinese security forces.
‘There would be three officers in a room kicking and punching people, using whips on their naked backs. They used belts – which is the cruellest method. People can’t last long and end up being beaten to death.’
The former Chinese police officer demonstrated to me their tactics with kicks and punches to an imaginary victim.
‘Their heads and eyes would become swollen; they could not see with all the blood on their face. Some would even lose their eyes. Then we would use water to revive them. They might not be allowed to sleep for a couple of days – sometimes the easiest ways are the worst and most effective. Afterwards they would go to hospital to be sewn back up.’
Electric batons were used on the victims’ genitals and there were special methods for women, such as placing steel cuffs tightly on their hands, then slamming them repeatedly on a table.
‘After two or three minutes, they’d be crying because it hurts so much,’ the whistleblower said.
Read more: Coming to a country near you … Confessions of a Chinese torturer: Prisoners given electric shocks on their genitals, women’s hands slammed on tables until they wept and inmates shackled to a punishment chair for two weeks