Police error increases prison term
Published 03/12/2010 | 05:00
A Beijing man jailed for the now-defunct crime of hooliganism 27 years ago will not be freed before 2020 after bureaucratic errors.
Niu Yuqiang's ordeal began in 1983 when the 18-year-old and friends snatched a hat and they later became involved in a fight.
Mr Niu was sent to prison. In 1990 his sentence was reduced to 18 years. Officials granted him medical parole because he was ill with tuberculosis.
For 14 years Mr Niu reported to his local parole office. In 1997 he married. China then scrapped the crime of hooliganism.
In 2004 a policeman knocked on his door. The prison sent letters to Mr Niu's police station ordering his return. The police never passed on the messages and Mr Niu was placed on a national wanted list. He was told that he had to complete his 18-year sentence and an additional 12 years for absconding.