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Shaanxi policemen convicted after suspect death
By Yuan Yue (
Updated: 2009-11-26 11:05

Seven policemen in Danfeng County, Shaanxi Province have been convicted after the death of a 19-year-old suspect, who is believed to have died from illegal interrogation methods.

On February 28, Xu Gengrong, a student in Danfeng High School, was summoned by the Danfeng Public Security Bureau on suspicion of a murder. He died ten days later of primary cardiac myopathy in the course of a trial.

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"They tried to extort a confession out of him. The police in charge wouldn't let him drink or eat. Also, this kid had his hands cuffed behind his back for long periods of time," said a prosecutor from Xi'an Municipal People's Procuratorate, who wants to remain anonymous. "Although the autopsy shows he died of heart problems, he was, in fact, tortured to death."

"I saw obvious signs of trauma on his body after he died," said the victim's mother, Cao Huiling.

Photos showing instruments of torture were presented in the court; among them were inquisitional chairs, shackles, iron wires and electric batons.

Yan Yaofeng, then chief of the Public Security Bureau of Danfeng County, has been sentenced to two years in prison for abusing his authority. Wang Qingbao, Secretary of Discipline, was accused of dereliction but was exempted from criminal punishment.