MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Mine Boss Jailed For Reporter Death

Published by MAC on 2007-06-28

Mine boss jailed for reporter death

Al Jazeera

28th June 2007

The owner of a mine in northern China has been jailed for life for his role in the death of a reporter investigating unlicensed mines, state media has reported.

A court in Linfen city in Shanxi province ruled that Lan Chengzhang and a fellow reporter were attacked and beaten in January by a gang of five men organised by mine owner Hou Zhenrun.

Lan died of his injuries in hospital a day later.

The case sparked a public uproar and an unusual intervention by the Chinese president who demanded a top level investigation into Lan's death.

Lan was apparently looking to interview the mine owner when he was attacked, the official Xinhua news agency said.

The five attackers were all given sentences of between five and 15 years, Xinhua reported.

Another man, Zheng Gui, was sentenced to a year in jail for harbouring the suspects, it said.

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