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China indicts six in death of suspect

BEIJING — Chinese prosecutors have indicted six men in the death of a state industry executive who was allegedly dunked in ice water during questioning in a case that points to abuses during internal investigations by the Communist Party.

The indictment, details of which were widely published in Chinese media, describes how 42-year-old Yu Qiyi drowned after having his head repeatedly pushed into a bucket of ice water.

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Yu was detained March 1 by agents from the party’s corruption watchdog in the eastern province of Zhejiang, and he died 38 days later after being rushed to a hospital.

While under questioning, he was held in a detention center run by the party’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection.

Critics say it is a body that operates without legal constraints and frequently coerces confessions from those under investigation.

The six men — five investigators from the commission and one local prosecutor — were charged with intentional harming in the Aug. 30 indictment.

But Yu’s widow Wu Qian said Thursday she believes there is enough evidence to charge them with murder.

‘‘From the start, I’d hoped the case could be resolved under the law and the perpetrators held accountable and severely punished, but sometimes that’s hard to do in China,’’ Wu said in a phone interview.

Wu said at the time of his death Yu was emaciated, with bruises on his arms and thighs, dark welts on his buttocks, and scrapes on his feet and shins.

While the injuries appeared to indicate that he was starved and beaten, the indictment made no mention of other forms of torture besides dunking.

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