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Death for developer who hired hitmen

A PROPERTY developer in Chongqing city was sentenced to death yesterday for hiring assassins to kill the only son of a family who refused to relocate, a Beijing newspaper reported today.

Developer Xiang Shiquan started to evict residents illegally from a residential area in the city's Wan'an District at the end of 2004 without government approval, according to the China Youth Daily report.

Two families, including the couple Cui Ying'an and Qin Wanlan, refused to accept the relocation plan offered by Xiang's company, Chongqing Hei Long Real Estate Development Group. They held out for three years until September 2007, suffering the developer's cuts to water, electricity and sewerage, the report said.

In August 2007, the court heard, Xiang asked a friend with a criminal record, Ran Qifu, to find thugs to give Cui's son a lesson, promising to pay them afterwards. Ran asked Tu. who ordered Shi Guanghui and Wang Yihua to beat up the couple's only child, Cui Jun, 31.

The duo stabbed him in his thigh, chest and buttocks before fleeing on September 16. Cui died in hospital.

Ran was sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve, and both he and Xiang were ordered to pay compensation of more than 170,000 yuan (US$24,890) to Cui's family.


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