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December 15, 2010

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Honey trap rackets lead to 4 killings

HONEY traps aimed at stealing or extorting money from prostitutes' clients have led to four recent killings, the Shanghai No. 1 Intermediate People's Court reported yesterday.

Judges urged police to crack down on the practice - known as xianrentiao in Chinese. Xianrentiao involves a prostitute's client being robbed by her accomplices or blackmailed with threats to report rape to police.

The word xianrentiao literally means "a god or immortal jumping." People say that even a god could do nothing except stamp his feet in rage if he was caught in a honey trap.

Judges said the xianrentiao trap usually occurs in suburban areas where migrant workers are gathered.

"Most of the people who devise these traps are from the same areas," said Ao Yingjie, a court judge. "If theft or blackmail fails, they turn to violence."

The court's latest case involved a Jiangxi Province native migrant worker surnamed Liu, who discovered money in his wallet had been switched for counterfeit notes while he was having sex with a prostitute in November 2009.

Liu gathered three men from his village to look for the prostitute a month later.

They argued with other prostitutes, and Ding Feihu and Ding Huibiao, the women's "minders," called on gang members to attack the men. The two minders killed one man and injured two others.

Ding Feihu was sentenced to death with a reprieve of two years last month and Ding Hui-biao was jailed for 15 years for manslaughter.

In another case, as the victim surnamed Yang was about to have sex with a prostitute, he became aware that two men were trying to rob him. Ma Shilong and Yang Yun then beat the man to death.

Ma was given life imprisonment and Yang received 13 years in jail this year.

The other deaths occurred in fights between aggrieved parties and prostitutes' minders, judges said.


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