Frank Langfitt at NPR News: Ex-Inmates Speak Out About Labor Camps As China Considers 'Reforms'

She says fellow inmates beat her in exchange for reduced sentences — a practice human rights investigators say is common in these camps.

"Everyone went to sleep at night, not me," Shen recalls. "They gave me a small stool, forcing me to stand on it. Once you fell to the ground, people would come to beat you. They asked drug addicts and prostitutes to beat you up."

Those beatings proved effective. After seven months, Shen gave in. She signed the compensation agreement and was released, but she continues to protest what happened to her.