Coronavirus: nearly 5,800 people arrested for pandemic-related crimes in China
- Cases include a supermarket shopper who beat another customer to death for not wearing a mask, and a person who mowed down health workers in a car
- Others suspected of selling defective medical equipment, lying about travel history, and embezzling fundraiser money, according to prosecutor’s office
Nearly 5,800 people suspected of killing health workers, selling defective medical equipment and lying about their travel history have been arrested in China for pandemic-related crimes since January, the state prosecutor’s office said.
One case involved a shopper who beat another customer to death for not wearing a mask in a supermarket.
Other cases included a person who deliberately mowed down medical workers with a car, and another was arrested for stabbing a health inspector with a dagger when they were monitoring temperatures.
Some have also been accused of embezzling money collected from fundraisers to help coronavirus patients, selling defective medical equipment, and lying about their travel history or health condition.
“From January to July, 5,797 people were arrested and 6,755 were prosecuted,” the Supreme People’s Procuratorate said in a statement on Thursday.
The statement did not specify how many people were still in detention or whether some had already been sentenced.
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The country has also deployed a range of smartphone apps to track the whereabouts of people to quickly identify possible cases.
Wearing a mask is mandatory in supermarkets, cinemas or on public transport, and many people choose to wear one while outdoors as well, as a safeguard against the virus.
China has not reported any locally transmitted infections in recent days.