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Jailed billionaire’s father claims real estate suit is a fraud

By Wen Ya (Global Times)

08:43, November 29, 2012

A curious, longstanding civil suit that appears to involve the remaining assets of a billionaire who was sentenced to death with reprieve for cheating investors took another odd twist Tuesday.

The Jinhua Intermediate People's Court heard Wu Ying testify in the woman's prison where she is being held that she knows nothing about a real estate dispute that involves three men and buildings she was said to have owned and were sold before she was arrested.

The media was not allowed to hear Wu's testimony, and her father told the Global Times the entire case is a sham.

"Wu doesn't know the defendants or the plaintiff and the housing transaction never took place. The case is designed to defraud Wu's assets," Wu Yongzheng told the Global Times.

It is the fifth time since December 2006 the courts have dealt with the case. That's when Bi Jian, who claimed to work for Wu, sued Hu Ziren and Liu Xianfu after they failed to complete payment for 14 homes, which he had helped Wu sell to the two men. Bi claimed Wu had signed documents selling the homes to Hu and Liu for 34.3 million yuan ($5.51 million) but they still owed Wu 4.90 million yuan.

That year the intermediate court ruled in Bi's favor but that decision was overturned after Hu and Liu appealed, Zhu Jianwei, Wu's lawyer, told the Global times.

The new verdict was also appealed and the Zhejiang Provincial Higher People's Court ordered yet another trail in September 2011, the Oriental Morning Post reported.

"I'm not clear why the case was suspended so long, but I'm sure the sales certificate is fake and Wu doesn't know the three people," Zhu told the Global Times. "Someone wants to cheat Wu by manipulating legal procedures."

Neither Hu nor Liu were available for comment.

Zhu also added additional intrigue to the case by recounting how his client was kidnapped in 2006 and forced to sign more than 30 pages of blank paper. Zhu said the pages were turned into transaction document bearing Wu's signatures.

In May the Zhejiang court sentenced Wu to death with a two-year reprieve.

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