Hu Wanlin

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Hu Wanlin (Chinese: , born 1949, Mianyang, China) was thought to be one of the world's most prolific medical serial killers. He was arrested for killing 146 people.[1]


Hu Wanlin was born in the city of Mianyang, Sichuan Province and only completed primary education.[1] He was imprisoned for homicide in the 1980s [2] as well as swindling, and abducting and trafficking in women.[1] While in prison in 1993, he opened a medical practice.[3]

He was acquitted on a retrial in 1997. On release he continued practising medicine illegally in the northern Shanxi Province and northwestern Shaanxi Province where he allegedly started two hospitals. [4] This continued until February 1998, when he was banned by local authorities. Hu then went to Henan in June 1998.

Hu's 'treatments' were thought to have resulted in the death of at least 146 people.[4] The “treatments” involved herbal preparations which were proved to contain high amounts of sodium sulphate which is poisonous in large doses.[1] He also employed the traditional practice of qigong, in which the healer is said to emit qi from his body, which allegedly has curative powers without physical contact being necessary.[1] Hu became well-known, having his medical practice and “medical miracles” described by a well-known Chinese novelist, Ke Yunlu. It seems that his malpractice continued for many years due to bribes paid to officials. [2]

Hu was arrested on January 18, 1999 in Shangqiu,[4] aged 50, on suspicion of causing nearly 150 deaths. He was convicted of practising medicine without a license on October 1, 2000, receiving 15 years imprisonment, suspension of voting rights for five years and a 150,000 yuan fine.[1][5]