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'Chongqing Butcher' faces trial

AN alleged mob mastermind called the "Chongqing Butcher" stood trial today for bribery, intentional injury, and leading a mafia-like gang that controlled the city's pork market.

Wang Tianlun and another 22 suspects faced Chongqing No.5 Intermediate People's court, where the city's former deputy police chief and justice bureau director Wen Qiang testified for the first time on how he provided protection to the gangs.

Wen faces a separate trial for rape, taking millions of yuan in bribes, possession of unexplained assets and offering protection to gangs.

Wang's trial was part of a months-long crackdown in the southwest city that has exposed widespread government and police involvement in "black societies."

Jinpu Food Company owned by 43-year-old Wang was the best-equipped slaughterhouse in southwestern China. Forty-one percent of Chongqing's pork sellers were persuaded to buy pork from Wang's company and Wang pulled millions from the trade, according to the indictment.

Wang started his gang in 1996 with his brother Wang Dongmin and brother in law Li Canghai, and they used violence to make most of the farmers in Chongqing send their pigs to his slaughterhouse, the court heard.

In 2003, Wang ordered his gang members to club to death a butcher surnamed Pan because he killed his own pigs, judges heard. Wen Qiang said Wang offered him 200,000 yuan to help make the murder case go away and he successfully hid the case for two years after he took the money.

Prosecutors said Wang also offered another 600,000 yuan to six police officers who helped him hook up with Wen.

According to the indictment, Wang's company controlled almost half of the city's pork market for over 10 years by means of extortion, violence and bribes.


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