CHANGSHA, Dec. 27 -- Four urban management officers in central China were sentenced to between 3.5 and 11 years in prison on Friday for the death of a watermelon vendor, by a local court.
Liao Weichang received 11 years; Yuan Cheng, Luo Weiping and Xia Jiyu were sentenced to six years, four years and three and a half years in prison respectively at Yongxing County People's Court.
Deng Zhengjia, 56, a farmer from Linwu County, died following a fight with urban management officers on July 17.
The officers confiscated Deng's scales and four watermelons after he and his wife, who were selling watermelons at an area prohibited to vendors, ignored the officers' instructions, the court said in a verdict.
A brawl broke out between the Deng couple and the four officers about one hour later at another market, during which Deng died. The autopsy results showed that Deng died of an intracranial hemorrhage caused by external force, the court said.
The four officers turned themselves in to the public security bureau of Linwu County after the incident, which is the reason for their lenient punishment, said the court.
Deng's family has received 897,000 yuan (147,825.6 U.S. dollars) in compensation which includes death compensation, funeral expenses and an award for damages related to emotional distress, according to a statement by Linwu County in July.