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Tomb raiders given jail terms in East China

Xinhua | Updated: 2019-12-13 15:39

HEFEI -- An East China court has given the first-instance sentences to 30 members of a gang who robbed ancient tombs and six others who sold the stolen cultural relics.

The Xiejiaji District People's Court in the city of Huainan, Anhui province, handed down the sentences of jail terms ranging from two to 13 years and charged fines of varying amounts.

The court heard that the gang led by Qiu Guoyu and Bai Wei committed 21 crimes of robbing ancient tombs between July 2016 and March 2018.

Among the stolen relics were copper swords, bronze mirrors and agate hairpins.

According to the local cultural relics department, the looted tomb dating back to the Warring States Period (475 BC-221 BC) and the Han Dynasty (202 BC-220) have important historical, artistic and scientific values. A stolen bronze sword, for example, was identified as a national third-class cultural relic.

Police have confiscated more than 100 pieces of national second and third-level cultural relics stolen by the gang.

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