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China police ordered to resign over detainee 'torture'

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A Chinese police chief has been ordered to resign and a deputy chief has been fired amid allegations that a man died in custody after being tortured.

Police initially said Wang Yanhui died suddenly while being questioned in Henan province over alleged theft, state media reported.

But when his family saw his body they said his injuries suggested abuse.

The incident has fuelled public anger over a series of reports of torture and deaths in police detention.

Zhang Guanjun, police chief in Henan's Lushan county, was ordered to stand down from his post over dereliction of duties, said Xinhua.

The news agency said an unnamed deputy chief policeman had also been removed from his post and four policemen involved in the alleged torture handed over to prosecutors.

Mr Wang was reported to have died while being interrogated over alleged theft on 21 February, three days after he was arrested.

The Chongqing Evening News reported that he had died suddenly after drinking hot water. Other reports said he had been taken to hospital after becoming ill during questioning.

But Mr Wang's family said when they collected his body it showed signs of multiple violent injuries.

They told state media his nipples had been cut off, his genitals cut and his skull fractured.

The provincial security bureau said all those found responsible would be severely punished, reported Xinhua.

Last April, China launched a campaign to "eliminate unnatural deaths" among detainees and prison inmates.

It followed several suspicious deaths in custody, including that of Li Qiaoming in a prison in southern Yunnan Province.

Prison officers initially claimed he had died while playing a game of hide-and-seek with other inmates, but an investigation found he had been beaten to death by fellow inmates.



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