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China Says No Death Sentence to Lai
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A senior CPC official said Tuesday that the allegation Lai Changxing will be sentenced to death and subjected to abuse after repatriation is groundless.

Gan Yisheng, vice secretary of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection of the Communist Party of China (CPC) said at a press conference that "China is a big and responsible country who honors its words."

Gan raised an example, saying that since Lai's case was uncovered, more than 30 criminal suspects involved in the case have turned themselves in the judicial organs, most of them coming back from abroad. The judicial organs live up to their words to handle their cases with leniency by applying to laws and regulations.

Lai is the fugitive suspect wanted by the International Criminal Police Organization. Recently, Canada's federal court held a hearing on the risks evaluation of Lai's repatriation.

Local media said Lai's lawyer suspected on two points -- one is that the promise made by China's judicial organ did not explicitly said Lai won't be sentenced to death with reprieve, which might end up with execution. Another is that Lai might be subjected to abuse after repatriation.

Gan said according to China's Criminal Law, there are two types of death sentence -- death sentence with immediate execution and death sentence with reprieve.

China has promised not to sentence Lai Changxing to death. It means he won't be given death penalty with immediate execution nor death penalty with reprieve, said Gan.

Gan said Lai has stayed in Canada for over seven years. He did not get what he wanted, nor will he get in future. He has lost something he did not want to lose and will lose even more in future.

There is an old Chinese saying: the ocean of suffering is endless, but when you look back, you will see the bank. "We advise Lai not to keep stubborn but come back to confess his crimes as early as possible. China's door remains open for him," said Gan.

At the press conference, Gan also declared that China had punished 97,260 members of Communist Party of China (CPC) in 2006, amid a continuous campaign to fight graft and build a "clean" Party.

Among the CPC members punished, 3,530 had been handed over to prosecutors, including seven officials at or above the governor and minister level, said Gan.

(Xinhua News Agency February 13, 2007)

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