Gang leader in southwest China gets 20-year jail term
A man convicted of organizing a crime gang that intentionally injured seven people and took huge amounts of money in racketeering over the past eight years was sentenced to 20 years in jail Thursday at a court in southwest China's Chongqing Municipality, Xinhua reported.
Li Yi, often known by his nickname "Mickey Mouse", was also fined 1 million yuan (146,470 U.S. dollars), the Second Intermediate Court of Chongqing ruled Thursday after first trial.
The other 25 members of the gang received jail terms from six months to 17 years.
More than half of them are under 30 years old. The youngest is 18.
Li, born in 1973, served two years in jail for rape in the early 1990s. He organized the crime gang in 2001 and made more than 3 million yuan through racketeering, a court spokesman said.
His gang used violence to levy fees from taxi drivers and vendors at a market in Kaixian County, the spokesman said.
The gang were also convicted of arson, tax evasion, robbery and illegally owning two guns.
Chongqing started a gang crackdown in June, exposing deep ties between police and criminals. Warrants have been issued for the arrest of more than 800 people, and 327 people have been prosecuted.
On Tuesday, organized crime boss Xie Caiping, labeled the "godmother of the underworld" in Chongqing, was sentenced to 18 years in prison.
Xie was sister-in-law of Wen Qiang, formerly the second in command of the Chongqing police and director of the justice bureau before his arrest.
Wen will be prosecuted later in November in connection with the offences of rape, money laundering, disguising or concealing the proceeds of crime, illegally holding firearms, offering loans at high interest, forging official and corporate seals, introducing women to prostitution and taking bribes.