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Watch recording 'proves probe result'

Updated: 2011-01-31 07:44

By Wu Yiyao (China Daily)

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SHANGHAI - A watch with a micro recorder worn by Qian Yunhui, a former village leader, has been found and supports the previous conclusion that his death was an accident, Wenzhou police said on Saturday.

Debate was sparked throughout the country following the recent decapitation of the 53-year-old Qian, a leader in the Zhaiqiao village in Yueqing, a city in East China's Zhejiang province.

In the past six years, Qian led local villagers in protests against the expropriation of their farmland for industrial development.

Qian was killed in a traffic accident on the morning of Dec 25. According to authorities in Zhejiang province, his head was severed by a truck driven by an unlicensed driver, and his death was not the result of malicious intrigue,

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But Qian's fellow villagers and Chinese netizens believed that Qian was deliberately held beneath the truck's tire.

Their suspicions grew after two pictures of the incident's aftermath were circulated online. One shows Qian wearing a watch on his wrist when he died, while another shows Qian with nothing on his wrist. That minor difference stirred speculation that the watch might contain a micro recorder. Detailed information about the accident, some said, might have been recorded and, if recovered, could lead to knowledge of the real cause of Qian's death.

Wenzhou police said the watch does contain such a device and that it was recording during the entire time of the accident.

According to the police, Wang Liquan, a local villager, took the watch off Qian's wrist after the wreck and hid it at a neighbor's home. Wang told authorities that he got the watch on Jan 13 and sent it to the police the next day.

The police said the recording supports the previous conclusion that Qian was killed by a traffic accident instead of a well-plotted murder.

The watch device will be used to furnish evidence when the court holds a hearing on the case on Feb 1.

Qian Yunhui's family members have accepted a compensation deal of 1.05 million yuan ($159,574) from the driver and his employer, and Qian Chengxu, Qian Yunhui's son, said they will soon cremate his father's body, according to Oriental Morning Post.


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