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December 17, 2009

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Ex-cop faces court for murder, drugs, extortion

A FORMER policeman, who allegedly became an organized crime boss and amassed a fortune from loan sharking, went on trial for murder and other crimes in southwestern China yesterday.

Yue Cun, 47, fronted the No.5 Intermediate People's Court in Chongqing City with 39 other gang members.

Yue, the former director of Nanbin Road police station in the city's Nan'an District, served as a police officer from 1996 to 2004, said a court official. After he retired, he became a millionaire as chairman of Yinde Company.

Yue organized and operated his company and gang in much the same way he managed the police station, authorities said.

The 13 charges Yue faces include organizing a criminal ring, bribery, murder, intentional injury, kidnapping, extortion, illegal detention, and selling and possessing narcotics and firearms.

Debt collection

Yue's alleged illegal businesses of usury, private investigation of extramarital affairs and debt collection with violence earned him 200 million yuan (US$29 million), the court was told.

Yue began his business in 1996 by running a cinema, where he hired loafers as "security guards."

They began to collect protection fees from local bars in 1998 and were allegedly engaged in two fights in 1999, which left two people dead.

Yue allegedly also opened the Bangde Detective Agency, providing debt collection and investigation of extramarital affairs.

The agency bribed police and telecommunication company employees to obtain details about people's residences, cars and phone calls, the court heard.

It was also paid by real estate companies to harass and threaten residents who were reluctant to move to make way for real estate projects.

The trial would continue for 10 days, the official said.


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