16-year jail for official in Shanghai fire incident

August 2nd, 2011 - 9:00 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, Aug 2 (IANS) A district official in China was Tuesday sentenced to 16 years in prison in a case related to a fire in a high-rise building in Shanghai city last year, Xinhua reported.

The accident left 58 people dead and 71 injured.

Gao Weizhong, former director with the construction and transport committee of Jing’an district, received the sentence for abuse of authority and corruption, according to the verdict issued by an intermediate people’s court of Shanghai municipality.

The fire, which occurred last November on Jiaozhou road, engulfed the 28-storey building which was being renovated at that time. The blaze was started by sparks from welding torches, which ignited nylon netting and scaffolding.

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