You can now read 5 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

American accused of leading gang in China is tried

BEIJING — An American businessman who is accused of loansharking, arson, kidnapping rivals, and paying thugs to toss acid in the face of a judge, among other crimes, went on trial this week in a case that has raised questions about the use of forced confessions by Chinese courts and prompted concern from US officials.

The businessman, Vincent Wu, a Chinese immigrant who settled in California two decades ago, was originally scheduled to stand trial more than a year ago, but his case has been repeatedly delayed.

Continue reading below

Since his arrest in June 2012, prison officials have refused to provide consular access to US diplomats by saying that Wu is a citizen of China, not the United States.

The trial, which began Monday at the Guangzhou Intermediate People’s Court, is expected to last two weeks.

Wu, 57, described by prosecutors as the ringleader of a local crime syndicate in the southern province of Guangdong, says the confession was extracted through torture.

In a deposition, he said he had been hung from the ceiling by his arms, force-fed stimulants that kept him awake for days and beaten until he signed the confession.

Loading comments...
Subscriber Log In

We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles'

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Already a subscriber?
Your city. Your stories. Your Globe.
Yours FREE for two weeks.
Enjoy free unlimited access to Globe.com for the next two weeks.
Limited time only - No credit card required!
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.
Thanks & Welcome to Globe.com
You now have unlimited access for the next two weeks.
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.