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Twenty six stand trial for fatal coal-mine dispute in SW China

(Xinhua)

10:25, October 25, 2011

KUNMING, Oct. 24 (Xinhua) -- Twenty six people went on trial Monday over nine deaths in a violent mining dispute in Luxi County, southwest China's Yunnan Province, last year.

On November 18, 2010, 120 people, wielding steel pipes and knives, were involved in an incident near Xiaosongdi Coal Mine as their opponents set off explosives and opened fire with guns. Nine people were killed and 48 injured.

Wang Jianfu, contractor of the Xiaosongdi Coal Mine, stands accused of planning and carrying out the killings with dozens of his staff. He has been charged with seven crimes, including murder, setting off explosives and illegally trading in guns, according to the Intermediate People's Court in Honghe Prefecture, which administers the county.

Wang had had a dispute over mining resources with Zheng Chunyun, the owner of a neighboring mine. It is thought that Zheng sent the knife-wielding mob to Wang's mine that day, only for them to be ambushed by Wang's group.

Twenty officials involved in the case have been punished. Five of them, including a deputy head of Luxi County and a commissar with the county public security bureau, were fired in June.

The trial is scheduled to last for four days.

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