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February 9, 2010

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Cop: I took the money, but didn't help gangs

A FORMER police chief in Chongqing Municipality pleaded guilty to taking bribes when he stood trial yesterday, but denied that he protected the city's criminal gangs.

Prosecutors said Peng Changjian, 47, former deputy director of the city's Public Security Bureau, received more than 4.71 million yuan (US$690,000) from subordinates who sought promotion and three gang masters in exchange for his protection.

Peng confessed in Chongqing No.1 Intermediate People's Court that he took the money, yet did not provide protection for Ma Dang, Yue Ning, and Wang Xiaojun, who were convicted of running criminal rings and prostitution dens in previous trials.

He argued that he received the money only for socializing, because the bribers asked for nothing and he gave no preferential treatment.

According to the indictment, Peng could not account for the source of more than 4.67 million yuan in his assets.

Peng's acquaintance with the three mob bosses dated to 1997 when he was a deputy police chief in the city's Yuzhong District, the prosecutors said. During his tenure, the three nightclubs of Ma, Yue, and Wang, went unchecked while they provided space for prostitutes.

Peng argued that he was merely being cautious in police law enforcement.

The court did not reach a verdict yesterday.


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