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Innocent man detained for 12 years files compensation claim


07:59, June 04, 2013

ZHENGZHOU, June 3 (Xinhua) -- A farmer in central China's Henan Province on Monday initiated state compensation proceedings after he was found not guilty in a murder and rape case and released after 12 years in detention.

Li Huailiang was the prime suspect in the rape and murder of a 13-year-old girl that occurred in Yexian County in the city of Pingdingshan in August 2001.

From 2001 to 2006, Li stood trial seven times and was given three different verdicts. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison, death and death with reprieve, respectively. But all three verdicts were ultimately overturned due to a lack of evidence.

The case started receiving more attention in June 2012, when China Comment magazine reported that the Pingdingshan Intermediate People's Court signed a "death penalty guarantee" with the girl's parents in 2004, promising to sentence Li to death so that the girl's mother would not appeal to higher authorities, even if the verdict was ultimately overturned by the Henan Higher People's Court.

The intermediate court responded by saying the agreement had no legal standing.

In the latest court session held on April 25, Li was found not guilty and was finally released.

In the claim he filed to the intermediate people's court, Li asked for 3.79 million yuan (619,222 U.S. dollars) in compensation from the court.

The money is intended to compensate Li for the violation of his personal freedom, mental suffering, medical costs, loss of work and legal fees.

Li also asked the city's public security bureau, procuratorate and intermediate people's court to clear his name and extend an apology.

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