NEWS

Thousands Arrested For ‘Virus-Related Crimes’ In China

This file photo taken on April 29, 2020 shows an engineer taking samples of monkey kidney cells as he make tests on an experimental vaccine for the COVID-19 coronavirus inside the Cells Culture Room laboratory at the Sinovac Biotech facilities in Beijing.(Photo by NICOLAS ASFOURI / AFP) / TO GO WITH Health-virus-China-vaccines, FOCUS by Ludovic EHRET

 

 

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 epidemic-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 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 Thursday.

The statement did not specify how many people were still in detention or whether some had already been sentenced.

File photo: Two women wear protective suits as they walk on a street near the closed Xinfadi market in Beijing on June 13, 2020. GREG BAKER / AFP

 

China has largely brought the spread of the novel coronavirus under control — since it first emerged in the central city of Wuhan in December 2019 — with strict lockdowns, aggressive contact tracing and close monitoring of neighbourhoods.

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 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.

AFP

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