An American-Chinese businessman yesterday claimed thugs linked to the People's Armed Police beat him up after he fell out with a Shenzhen developer selling flats to Hong Kong investors. American Chinese School president Paul Lee Hua-shing held a press conference in Admiralty yesterday to outline his dispute with the developer he alleges stole land from his college. Mr Lee said he was suing Shenzhen Century Huixin Company for 120 million yuan (HK$112.4 million) in compensation and was also taking legal action against the Shenzhen Government in the city's Intermediate People's Court alleging it conspired with the developer. He wanted to alert Hong Kong buyers so they understood the 'risks involved' in purchasing flats at Huixin Gardens, near the Man Kam To border crossing. He entered into a joint venture with the company on the recommendation of a senior official at the city's Land Management Bureau. Mr Lee said all he knew about the company was that president Wei Xingding had been director of the mayor's office. They contracted to jointly develop the more than 300,000 square feet site into a residential development with the school at the front. Mr Lee said he later found plans were submitted to the Government which included a shopping centre and a small area of six metres by 56 metres for the school - differing from the contract he signed and not enough for the school. When he refused to agree to the company's proposals, the Land Management Bureau removed his land-use rights. He told the South China Morning Post: 'I was accosted, I was beaten up by 20 men in May 1997 but the Public Security Bureau refused to investigate.' Mr Lee said Mercedes vehicles used by the men who attacked him in his Shenzhen office had registrations belonging to a company, Anhua, owned by the People's Armed Police. A shareholder at the Shenzhen office, who would give his name only as Mr To, said Mr Lee's allegations were 'lies' and 'groundless accusations'. Mr To said Mr Lee had asked for a four-million-yuan deposit which was paid and he then rented land out to a car park operator against the office's wishes.