BEIJING, Sept. 21 -- A murderer sentenced to death
for killing four and seriously injuring one in a fit of rage over delayed wages
waits for a court in Northwest China to hand out its verdict.
An intermediate people's court in the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region sentenced Wang Binyu to death earlier this
year because the desperate migrant worker, failing to obtain his overdue
payment, stabbed his foreman and the foreman's three family members and
seriously wounded a co-worker.
Wang later appealed to the Ningxia High People's
Court, but the court has yet to make its decision.
The high court refused to comment on the case before
it hands down its verdict.
"The high court has exceeded the time limit for
handing down the verdict," the plaintiff's attorney Wu Shaozhi told China Daily
in a telephone interview yesterday. "But it might be good news for Wang Binyu as
it shows the court is dealing with the case in detail and public opinion will be
Wu is expected to arrive in Yinchuan, capital of
Ningxia, today in a final attempt to persuade the court to hand down a "death
with years of reprieve" penalty, a less severe punishment that means he could
spend time in jail instead.
The lawyer said the public has shown tremendous
sympathy for Wang and his family by giving him many donations including cash.
Wang's story has been widely reported in the media
since earlier this month. The tragedy triggered widespread discussion about the
fairness of the penalty.
Wu said yesterday that Wang's behaviour is an example
of "undue defence," meaning he had used excessive measures to protect himself.
What's more, Wang had urgently needed the money to support himself and his
family, Wu added.
"As for the whole picture, China is on its way to
abolish the death penalty," said Wu, who insisted Wang deserves a less severe
In a fit of rage, the 28-year-old man killed his
foreman Wu Hua and Wu's three family members in May after failing to claim more
than 5,000 yuan (US$620) wages.
The public showed great sympathy for him partly
because before the violence, Wang, who needed the money to pay for medical costs
for his father, had asked local courts and labour department for help without
As he once again approached the contractors and
foreman to get his wages, the young man was abused and beaten up by them.
"I couldn't stand it any more," Wang said afterwards.
"I was fed up with them, and I stabbed five persons with a knife." Wang then
turned himself in to the police.
Peking University's Law School professor Chen
Xingliang, however, contended that Wang's reaction is definitely not undue
defence, and the hope is slim for the high court to change the original
But the fact that Wang committed the violence in a
fit of anger and later turned himself in might somewhat help him, Chen said.
The case also sheds light on the lack of effective
legal remedies for the underprivileged group of migrant workers.
According to statistics released by the People's
Daily on Monday, the growing source of labour consists of 120 million rural
workers that contribute more than 530 billion yuan (US$65.4 billion) a year to
local economies outside their hometowns.Enditem
(Source: China Daily)