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October 14, 2010

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Firm sued for 'phone harassment'

A MAN sued Shanghai Centaline Property Consultants Company yesterday, accusing it of bombarding him with scam messages and sales calls after getting his mobile phone number.

Prosecutors said it is the first lawsuit heard by the court involving message and telephone harassment.

At the Pudong New Area People's Court, the plaintiff, Wang Baiming, asked the company to pay him one yuan in compensation for harassment. Centaline rejected his request.

"I'm not suing the company for money," said Wang, "I'm suing them because I'm fed up with their phone call harassment, especially as it caused me serious problems."

Wang told the court that he broke his feet getting off a bus because he was reading messages sent by the company. While he recuperated, he was unable to work and ended up losing his job.

He said the alleged harassment started in May when he was trying to rent out a room in his apartment.

Having seen his details online, a Centaline official contacted him, telling him that she had a tenant who wanted to inspect the apartment.

But Wang said the "tenant" turned out to be a salesman who attempted to sell him financial products.

From that point, Wang claimed that he received a huge numbers of scam messages and phone calls from Centaline every day.

But Centaline said it was Wang who asked the company to help him rent out his room and they called him only for normal business communications.

Neither side could offer evidence showing who had first approached the other party.

The case continues.


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