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August 8, 2011

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Man surrenders over rape of girl

A MAN alleged to have raped a 13-year-old girl surrendered after seven years on the run, claiming he could no longer stand "the torture in his soul," prosecutors said yesterday.

The suspect, Li Guohua, had a relationship with his landlord's daughter in 2004 when he was 19. Her family reported him to police after finding them in bed together.

Under China's Criminal Law, anyone who has sex with a girl younger than 14 is deemed to have committed rape.

On the run, Li found a girlfriend who gave birth to their daughter. But he was abandoned after her family learned of his past.

Li has raised the daughter alone for years and is worried how to tell her about his past, said prosecutors.

The Qingpu District Prosecutors' Office has approved the arrest of Li for the crime of rape, officials said yesterday.

Li came to Shanghai to work in 2004, took lodgings near his factory and became infatuated with his landlord's daughter. He admitted he knew the girl's age.

Li was thrown out of the house after the girl's mother found them kissing.

They continued to meet in secret and he visited at 11pm one night in March 2004, while the girl and her older sister were playing.

When the older sister went to bed, Li persuaded the younger girl to have sex with him, said prosecutors.

The girls' grandmother came to the apartment at 5am the next morning and found Li asleep with the sisters.

Li fled to Guangdong Province and worked in an electronics factory where he began a relationship with colleague Wang Lixiao.

Li told Wang about his past, which she accepted. He also told Wang's parents, but they were shocked and told their daughter to leave him. Wang left Li and their child.

As time passed, Li worried over how would his daughter would view him when she learned of his past.

His mother asked him to face his past and promised to take care of his daughter.

Recently, Li handed himself in to the Shanghai Public Security Bureau.


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