China Digest, November 17, 2012
High risk of stroke found
The Beijing Municipal Health Bureau aims to survey 130,000 residents over the age of 45 by March to determine their risk of having a stroke, the capital's third leading cause of death, the Beijing Daily reports. The bureau has polled some 80,000 residents and found that roughly 70 per cent had a high risk. The disease was responsible for 21 per cent of city deaths last year.
Aid for disabled children
All disabled children under the age of six will, starting next year, be eligible for rehabilitation services and assisted living devices to help them with daily tasks, the Beijing Daily reports. The Beijing Municipal Disabled Persons' Federation has for the past two years accepted more than 80 ideas for devices to help the capital's 7,500 disabled children.
Farmers jailed over drugs
Four farmers were given lengthy jail sentences by the Chongqing No 3 Intermediate People's Court for making Ice, the Legal Daily reports. Police seized more than 50kg of methamphetamine from a former preserved vegetable factory in Fuling district where the farmers made the drugs. The ringleader received a suspended death sentence, while the others each got at least 13 years in jail. Two more suspects await trial.
Region leads west in trade
Chongqing exported US$33.2 billion worth of goods and services in the first 10 months of the year, leading all central and western provinces during that period, chinanews.com reports. Chongqing customs said the figure represented a 140 per cent increase over last year. In the same period, Chongqing imported US$12 billion in goods and services, a year-on-year increase of 63 per cent.
Retrial for fraud suspect
A former car dealer received a second trial from the Lanzhou Intermediate People's Court on charges that he defrauded banks of more than three million yuan (HK$3.7 million), the Lanzhou Evening News reports. The man was convicted of forging the signatures of several people in 2002-03 to get the loans after his dealership chain began to fail. The provincial High Court ordered a new trial after he appealed against the conviction, arguing the loans had been guaranteed by his company and partially paid back.
Life for killing wife
The Lanzhou Intermediate People's Court sentenced a Yuzhong county man to life in prison for beating his wife to death after her failed attempt to divorce him, the Lanzhou Morning Post reports. The woman had sought the divorce after her husband accused her of having an affair, but a local court denied her request. The man attacked her in their car after leaving court, injuring her spine and leaving her bedridden. She slipped into a coma and died.
Bus driver catches thief
A Changsha woman has praised a local bus driver who confronted a passenger for stealing her mobile phone, the Xiaoxiang Morning Herald reports. The woman said she was sitting on the crowded bus when the driver, a former soldier, suddenly stood up and shouted at a male passenger: "Hands out!" The man, under the glare of the other passengers, took her phone out of his pocket and put it on the fare box. She had not noticed it was missing.
Cold-call scam cut off
A Changsha logistics manager has reported a novel scam in which he received 500 phone calls in just four hours, jamming the line, the Xiaoxiang Morning Herald reports. Each time, the anonymous caller rang one or two times and hung up. Eventually, the manager received a text message promising that calls would stop if he paid 300 yuan. The calls stopped after the man replied that he would call the police.
Database on bribers opens
Jiangsu prosecutors have opened the mainland's first "bribers dossier inquiry and management centre" in Nanjing, chinanews.com reports. Prosecutors said government agencies, state-owned firms and private entrepreneurs would be able to use the centre's database to check whether individuals have ever been connected to crimes involving corruption. As of October, the database had 36,000 pieces of information.
Fake-cash deal goes wrong
Police have detained three Nanjing men accused of participating in a counterfeit money deal gone bad, the Modern Express reports. One man paid the others 200,000 yuan in real money in exchange for one million yuan in fake cash. The buyer told police he had been robbed after finding most of what he had bought was ceremonial paper money. Officials found out the true story and confiscated the real cash.
Forum on fragile wetlands
WWF and the State Forestry Administration held a seminar in Poyang county to highlight Jiangxi province's fragile wetlands, the Jiangnan City Daily reports. It boasts 3.65 million hectares of wetlands, accounting for more than one fifth of the mainland's total. Its 47 wetland parks are home to 3,384 species of the world's critically endangered birds, many of them near Poyang Lake.
Warming to hot spring bid
More than 2.7 million households in 17 cities and counties near Poyang Lake are slated to receive heat produced using abundant hot springs and other geothermal energy sources, the Jiangnan City Daily reports. No timetable has been given for the plan. Most of the 91 hot springs are located in the southern areas administered by Ganzhou .
December date night
The Shanghai Matchmaking Association will host a mixer for divorcees, widows and widowers on December 8 at Xujiahui Park, the Shanghai Morning Post reports. It will be limited 500 at a time to allow easier communication. Services will be provided to allow people to double-check claims of car or home ownership.
Writer beaten up over land
Avant-garde writer Ma Yuan may not be able to attend a literature forum at Tongji University next week as he recovers from a beating in Yunnan on Thursday, the Oriental Morning Post reports. Ma, who teaches at the university, was beaten unconscious by local thugs in a dispute over land he bought in Xishuangbanna prefecture. He was attempting to set up a literary academy. Local officials detained suspects.
Boy lied about kidnapping
Yiwu city police say that a 12-year-old boy who claimed to have been kidnapped on Monday had really run away from home to avoid showing his parents a poor examination grade, the Qianjiang Evening News reports. The boy's teacher required pupils to get parents to sign their test papers. When the boy failed to return home for 12 hours, 100 villagers launched a search. He told his parents he had escaped from kidnappers.
Weaver gives away baskets
An 84-year-old Shangyu man has woven 2,500 vine and bamboo baskets for primary and kindergarten pupils in an effort to raise awareness about sustainable alternatives to plastic bags, xinhuanet.com reports. Qin Fayou spent 10 hours a day weaving the baskets, which were once widely used on trips to the markets. He hoped parents would use his baskets instead of plastic bags.