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July 30, 2010

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82 detained in raids on rental homes

EIGHTY-TWO people have been detained after police raids at 3,000 apartments on Tuesday, police said yesterday.

The campaign, a crackdown on illegal renting in Shanghai's Baoshan District, netted suspects allegedly involved in 42 cases including car theft and street robbery.

One of the suspects, surnamed Chen, had committed at least 10 robberies in the district's Gucun, Sitang and Tonghe areas, police said.

Chen was caught after a check at a house in Dongtan, Gucun Town.

Police investigations were ongoing last night.

During the raids early on Tuesday morning, six illegal Internet cafes were closed and 150 computers confiscated, police said.

Police said they had stepped up a citywide crackdown on illegal underground hotels and rental houses to secure visitors' safety.

Officials said the houses with one-day or short-term leases and underground hotels contained serious safety hazards and were often used as bases for criminal activities.

Police said 69 illegal hotels and rental houses had been banned this month with 136 people fined and punished.

Last Monday, eight underground hotels were discovered near the Shanghai South Railway Station in Xuhui District, in which rooms were divided into several smaller ones. Some rooms had previously been kitchens with gas pipes still installed, police said.


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