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Cops jailed for fatal bar brawl

A COURT in northeast China sentenced a police officer to life in prison yesterday for the nightclub beating death of a 22-year-old college student.

Another officer involved in the fatal fight last October was sentenced to 12 years.

Qi Xin, an officer with the Harbin Railway Public Security Bureau, was handed the life term by the Harbin Intermediate People's Court in the capital of Heilongjiang Province for his conviction on a charge of intentional injury.

His colleague, Liu Linan, was found guilty of the same charge, but court officials said Liu was given a lighter sentence because he turned himself in.

The court also ordered the defendants to pay 334,534 yuan (US$48,940) in compensation to the family of the victim, Lin Songling.

Yang Sen, who had been a friend of Lin's, was sentenced to three years in prison for injuring two officers involved in the fight. He was ordered to pay 37,245 yuan in compensation to the policemen.

There was no immediate word on whether any of the three would appeal.

Four other police officers who were present at the fight were found not guilty.

Lin and his friends quarreled with police in front of a nightclub at around 10pm on October 11 in Harbin, blaming policeman Li Xinyu of driving dangerously fast.

The confrontation developed into a fight, leaving Lin dead at the scene and several others from both sides injured.


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