A man who held two people hostage in a Henan office and threatened to detonate a bomb was shot dead by police after a 41/2-hour standoff, despite releasing his captives. The standoff occurred on Saturday and is the third hostage-taking incident to occur in the past 10 days on the mainland. All ended in violence, with two of the hostage-takers killed by police. Provincial newspaper Orient Today reported that Hunan native Li Jucai , 26, held two staff members of Fenghua Machinery company hostage at their office in the Shangqiu Economic-Technological Development Zone on Saturday, demanding 100,000 yuan (HK$112,700). He detonated the bomb after he was shot three times in the chest by police. No one was injured in the blast. An employee said Li had demanded the money in compensation for three cement rendering machines that he said he had bought from the company for 30,000 yuan each in October but did not work. 'He [Li] was very emotional and seemed to want to detonate the bomb,' the employee said. Armed officers, riot police and firefighters evacuated people from the building. Three police officers posing as company staff inspected the venue, while explosives experts confirmed that Li's bomb, packed in a parcel, could be detonated by a remote control he was holding. District police chief Zhu Peijun later approached Li claiming to be the company manager. He told Li one of the hostages was an accounts officer and had to be released to withdraw the money. Mr Zhu gave 100,000 yuan wrapped in newspaper to Li, who was still holding a hostage. Li declined to count the banknotes and left the office because he thought the company had prepared a car for his escape. Dozens of police officers mobbed Li after he released the second hostage and an officer shot him in his chest three times when he refused to give up the remote control. In Sichuan on the same day, a man held a television anchorwoman hostage in her car in a four-hour standoff that ended when the suspect shot himself in the head.