Executives in melamine scandal beg for leniency in Shanghai

13:19, April 15, 2010      

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Two of the three executives from Shanghai Panda Dairy Co., Ltd. who were convicted of selling recycled melamine-tainted milk products last year made a case for leniency at their second trial on Wednesday. The two appealed their sentences after their initial trial last month.

China Daily reported Thursday the three were sentenced in March by the Shanghai Fengxian district court to three to five years in jail for producing and selling toxic food, a charge that has a maximum penalty of death.

The two on trial at the Shanghai No. 1 Intermediate People's Court on Wednesday were Wang Yuechao, the company's board chairman, and Hong Qide, the general manager. The third employee, Chen Dehua, deputy general manager of the company, appeared in court with his two former colleagues.

All three admitted the charges in the first trial, but Wang and Hong challenged the term of their imprisonment, asking for leniency from the judge.

"I have fully realized the harm of what I did to society. I hope the court can take my attitude into consideration and mitigate my sentence,"Wang, who received five years in jail in the first trial, was quoted as saying by Thursday's China Daily.

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