Woman ‘finds letter from Chinese labour camp’ in Halloween decorations

An inmate at a Chinese labour camp left a daring and tragic message in Halloween decorations, which was discovered by a woman in the USA a year later.

The Oregonian reported on the story of Julie Keith, who bought Halloween decorations in Kmart but left them in storage for a year, until she decided to decorate her house in October.

Upon opening the box, she found a letter folded into eighths that gives a heart-rending glimpse into life at a Chinese labour camp. The person asked for the purchaser to send the letter to the ‘World Human Right Organisation’, and went on to say that it was being sent from Unit 8, Department 2 of the Masanjia Labour Camp in Shenyang.

The letter writer said people work there seven days a week for 15 hours a day, and are paid around $1.61 a month.


The letter has not been verified, but the Oregonian contacted the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement about it, sparking an investigation by Sears Holdings Corporation, which owns Kmart.

It is illegal to import items to the US that were produced or manufactured in a foreign country by forced, convict or indentured labour.

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