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Death sentence upheld for 'mafia' boss cop

JILIN Province's Higher People's Court in northeast China today upheld a death sentence with two years' reprieve on a former police director for 15 crimes including leading a mafia-like gang and bribery.

Sentences for another 29 defendants related to the gang were also upheld, reported.

Wang Yufan, former vice director of Tonghua City's public security bureau, was sentenced by Liaoyuan City Intermediate People's Court last month for selling drugs, extortion, assault and power abuse.

Two of Wang's former fellow officers, Zhang Xiuwen and Liu Jianhui, were sentenced to life imprisonment. Another 27 criminals who stood trial with Wang for their roles in his gang were sentenced to up to 20 years in prison.

Wang and 23 of the other 29 defendants filed appeals against the verdict, which has now been thrown out by the higher court.

Wang, 47, was known by Tonghua locals as the "mafia boss in police uniform" because he and his fellow officers not only protected crime organizations, but also used their power to extort businessmen for money, according to the court.

The court said during Wang's tenure from 2002 to 2009, he embezzled 2.4 million yuan (US$351,000) and took bribes worth 15.7 million yuan.


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