Chinese court backs death sentence for gang boss

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New Delhi, May 25 (ANI): A court in Chongqing, southwestern China has upheld the death sentence for a gang chief who was convicted of running a mafia-style ring that was engaged in prostitution, drug-trafficking, gambling, kidnapping, among other crimes.

A Xinhua report said that the Chongqing Municipal Higher People's Court Monday rejected the appeals of Chen Mingliang and members of his gang after a second trial.

Chen, 52, was handed death without reprieve on February 4, 2010 after the Third Intermediate People's Court of Chongqing convicted him on seven counts of charges at the first trial.

The verdict will now be forwarded to the Supreme People's Court for a final review.

Thirty-two members of Chen's crime gang received sentences ranging from death to nine months in prison.

The court said the gang "seriously disturbed" the social and economic orders in Chongqing and the crimes had left "serious impacts" on the society.

The Chen-led gang had been spreading fear since 2001. They were engaged in mob fights, kidnapping, running a brothel, trafficking at least 16,000 grams of narcotics, organizing illegal gambling tours and bribing officials, the court found.

Chen's gang was busted in last June when Chongqing kicked off a months-long massive mob crackdown.

About 3,000 suspects in 272 gangs were arrested. (ANI)

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