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Special Cell Built for AIDS Prisoner

A special cell has been built in Central China's Wuhan City for a prisoner with AIDS.

The prisoner, surnamed Liu, was the first AIDS prisoner in China, Xinhua News Agency's Web site said Tuesday.

Wuhan police built a special cell for Liu at a cost of 70,000 yuan (US$8,460) in October.

The cell was complete with necessary monitoring and sanitary equipment, the Web site said without giving details.

Separated from the prison, the cell is in a sparsely-populated area on the outskirts of Wuhan.

Liu, 24, was arrested earlier this year after he allegedly used syringes to blackmail residents in his neighborhood. Liu would tell the residents that the syringes were tainted with his blood and if they refused to give him money, he would attack them with the syringes, according to the Web site.

Wu, a drug addict for 10 years, was also allegedly responsible for a number of robberies in Wuhan.

Police assigned to guard the cell have been trained to avoid contracting AIDS and to take care of an AIDS patient. As well as guarding the cell, they also monitor Liu's health.

The cell is sterilized twice a day. Liu was grateful to be treated well, the Web site said.

(Shenzhen Daily November 12, 2003)

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