The Nanfang / Blog

Meet the New Drug on the Streets of Guangzhou: Khat, the “Arabian Tea”

Posted: 04/25/2014 4:43 pm

khat arabian tea drug illegal smuggling

The hottest drug on the streets of Guangzhou right has gotten a lot of attention from police, officials, media and parents. Called khat, or by its colloquial names “Arabian Tea” or “Bushman’s Tea“, police are warning the public that it is the equivalent to heroin and its euphoria high will last for two days.

An exhibit called “Reject Drugs, Cherish Life” in Yuexiu District gives the lowdown on the heinous drug that first infiltrated China’s last year through the criminal underground. The exhibit tells us the drug can be consumed by chewing upon the fresh leaves of the catha edulis plant, by drying its leaves and consuming it as a tea, or by grinding the dried leaves into a powder which is then dissolved into water for drinking.

The exhibit goes on to say khat is an extremely addictive drug that produces excitement and hallucinations in its user. Originally from Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, the drug has recently been classified as a nationally-prohibited drug in China that is quickly proliferating in part to its cheap street price: 500 yuan for 500 grams of fresh khat leaves, and 200 yuan for 500 grams of dried khat leaves.

The other reason that has helped spread this drug in China is that khat is so hard to detect. In its form as fresh cut leaves, khat has an appearance exactly like that of amaranth greens/Chinese spinach. In its dried form, khat looks just like the dried green tea leaves that every average Chinese drinks from a huge flask full of hot water every day.

An unidentified worker with the “Reject Drugs, Cherish Life” revealed the depravity of the khat drug ring that plagues Guangzhou through one given example:

“Last year, police uncovered a major khat smuggling ring and its users on Guangyuan Road. Throughout the building lived people of African nationality along with massive amounts of khat. There was an integrated chain of service and use between the drug dealers and users. And, police put an end to this drug hive.”

Community leaders are very concerned about khat’s effect upon the impressionable youth of China. An initiative to warn children about the dangers of khat called “The Little Red Bell“ have been making the rounds in China. khat arabian tea drug illegal smuggling

The concern for the welfare of children intensified recently after police in Jiujiang, Jiangxi Province made a startling discovery on April 23. At a drug arrest at a hotel, police found khat packaged in 60 orange drink powder packages with cartoon packaging. The drug is said to dissolve in water, and taste and smell just the same as any other refreshing drink a child would have.

Well, it’s not Krokodil, but to Chinese, it might as well be.

Khat invites controversial opinions from different people. While the use of khat is considered a way of life for generations of people in Somalia, Ethiopia and Yemen, khat is considered a prohibited substance in countries such as the United States, and was only recently banned in the UK on July 2013. The global spread of khat has to do with the migrations of Africans that use it.

The World Health Organization does not consider khat to be seriously addictive, and has been likened by some “to be like coffee“. However, HuffPo alleges that every monetary aspect of the khat market supports the al-Shabaab terrorist group in Somalia.

Photo: Hexun, 10yan


Huizhou Man Kidnaps Pregnant Girlfriend, Sets her On Fire [GRAPHIC]

Posted: 04/25/2014 1:18 pm

kidnapping pregnant woman immolation fire car boyfriend girlfriend

[This story may contain content that is offensive to some readers]

A disturbing story from the city of Huizhou, Guangdong: on April 24, a man kidnapped his six month pregnant girlfriend and forced her into her car that he set aflame, causing both of them to suffer serious burn injuries, iFeng reports.

The 36 year-old man, surnamed Li and from Lufeng, came prepared when he arrived at the woman’s Henan Anxiama apartment in Huicheng District yesterday morning. Li had brought along a container of gasoline as well as several natural gas canisters.

Li dragged the woman, identified as 21 year-old Xu from Boluo County, to her vehicle, a black Hyundai sedan. Then according to eyewitness accounts and photographs, Li would set the car aflame with both Xu and himself inside it.

After police arrived to put out the fire, both victims were take to hospital for treatment.

Here are some photos from the scene:kidnapping pregnant woman immolation fire car boyfriend girlfriendkidnapping pregnant woman immolation fire car boyfriend girlfriendkidnapping pregnant woman immolation fire car boyfriend girlfriendkidnapping pregnant woman immolation fire car boyfriend girlfriendkidnapping pregnant woman immolation fire car boyfriend girlfriend

Photos: iFeng


Scared of a Beating, Guangzhou Doctor Jumps Out of Window

Posted: 04/24/2014 7:40 pm

The recent announcement that police presence will be ramped up at Guangdong hospitals may have to do with incidents like this one.

A woman named Yi has a long-standing grievance with the Shijing People’s Hospital in the Baiyun District of Guangzhou. For ten long years, Yi has tried to taken the hospital to court, but has always been unsuccessful. Never one to consider that she may in fact be wrong, Yi has come to the hospital on several occasions lately to air her grievances in person.

This time, Yi has brought along family members for support, reports 21CN. According to an eyewitness, Yi and her family arrived at the gynecology department and, without first saying a word, began to beat a female doctor with fists and kicks. As the male family members locked the door and prevented anyone from coming in, Yi took out a knife with a 20-30 cm blade.

When security guards finally gained access to the room, they tried to separate the family from the doctor, but were unsuccessful due to the threat of the weapon. Yi and her family continued to beat the doctor, an altercation that lasted approximately 30-40 minutes in total. It wasn’t until the doctor climbed through the window of the examination room that she was finally able to escape, crying as she ran.

The doctor sustained a concussion and bruising throughout her body while the family was taken away to a police station.

And the reason for Yi’s imagined injustice? Yi’s daughter, born ten years ago to the doctor she was beating, suffers from cerebral palsy that Yi believes was caused by the doctor’s improper use of retractors.

Photo: N21


Heyuan Murder Suspect Jumps from 7th Floor Window to Avoid Capture

Posted: 04/24/2014 4:55 pm

Heyuan jumper murder suspect air mattress building suicide attemptAfter the grisly stabbing that left a mahjong parlor manager dead on April 18, a massive manhunt was on to catch prime suspect Wu X Zhong that included a RMB 20,000 reward.

On the afternoon of April 23, Wu was tracked down to his Shilong Plaza apartment in Yuancheng District of the City of Heyuan, Guangdong. Trapped on the seventh floor with no way out, Wu threatened to jump. Police cordoned off the area, called firefighters, and arranged to have an air bag set up on the street below.

RELATED: Pregnant Woman Commits Suicide, Family Blames Hospital

The bureau chief of the Yuancheng police and his own friend Li tried to talk Wu down, but after an hour of negotiation, Wu jumped.

Wu landed on the air mattress below. He was taken into custody, and is facing criminal charges.

People threatening to jump from tall places are usually wanting to attract attention, and a good barometer of having gotten enough attention is if an air mattress gets set up underneath.

So, what do you know? They’re not just full of hot air.Heyuan jumper murder suspect air mattress building suicide attemptHeyuan jumper murder suspect air mattress building suicide attemptHeyuan jumper murder suspect air mattress building suicide attemptHeyuan jumper murder suspect air mattress building suicide attempt

Photos: Dongguan Network

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Raid on Illegal Dongguan Abattoir Reveals Tampering with Beef

Posted: 04/23/2014 7:00 pm

private abattoir beef technique injection waterA police raid on a secret abattoir operating illegally in the outskirts of Dongguan has provided insight into the nefarious ways the beef you may be consuming can be tampered with.

Police were called to a remote, forested area located near Fuma Industrial park in Chigang, Dongguan, reported the Dongguan Times. There, police found an unlicensed abattoir that was slaughtering water buffalo cattle in less than hygienic conditions: Two dead cattle lying on the floor were surrounded by buzzing flies; cut meat was left uncovered in plastic boxes piled on the floor; and discarded water buffalo hides and offal were scattered everywhere.

Worst of all, the workers at the factory were in the process of injecting the slaughtered cattle with water at the time police arrived. In a process that can increase the mass of the beef by 15-20%, workers attach hoses to an artery in the neck of the slaughtered cow; then, they pump the cow with water, industrial pigments, and preservatives so that the beef will become heavier, look better, and have a longer shelf life. This process includes completely immersing the beef in water, and can sometimes be repeated up to 5 times.

private abattoir beef technique injection waterThe suspects escaped when police shouted their presence to the workers inside the compound. In all, approximately 1500 kg of beef was confiscated by officials and destroyed. The meat was to be sold in markets in the vicinity including those in Humen, Chang’an, and Shenzhen.

How can you tell the beef at your local market has been tampered with? Here are 6 telltale signs:

1. Beef injected with water will continually seep out water. Sellers of this meat will use rags to mop up the excess moisture.
2. Beef injected with water will display an especially red color. It will eventually come to lose its color; this fake beef looks shiny and has a glossy exterior. On the other hand, beef that has not been injected with water is a dark red and is prone to wrinkling.
3. Beef injected with water is not elastic to the touch. It isn’t flexible, and will release water when squeezed. On the other hand, beef not injected with water is flexible and sticky to the touch.
4. Blood veins are very distinct in beef injected with water, while they are not in real beef. The former has a limp color with a glossy sheen.
5. You can perform a test using toilet paper. Beef injected with water will soak through toilet paper in 5 seconds, while proper regulation beef will only show a little spotting.
6. When thawing out frozen beef injected with water, water collected in the plate will show a dark red color.

We can only hope that “beef injections” remain a wholesome practice that is served only for righteous purposes.

Photo: Time DG


Shenzhen Thief Steals Car With Baby in Backseat, Parents Clinging to Vehicle

Posted: 04/22/2014 11:41 am

shenzhen carjacking kidnapping child backseat

A brazen attempt to steal a car in Shenzhen has resulted in the fantastic spectacle of two people hanging on for dear life to a speeding car making its getaway, dragging them behind it, reports the Nandu. But as with all such terrible transgressions, we should try to remember the real victims of the crime.

On the evening of April 19, Mr Pan was out celebrating with his family at a restaurant located on Minfeng Road in the Longhua District of Shenzhen. As Pan left the driver’s seat to grab his bag from the trunk of the car, his wife Li exited the front passenger seat to walk around to the driver’s side.

Before Li could get in, a man suddenly jumped into the driver’s seat and started to drive away. Especially alarmed as the car was still occupied by their two and-a-half year old child and its grandmother sitting in the back seat, the parents were determined not to allow their single-most treasured commodity to be kidnapped. Said Li afterwards, If it wasn’t for the child, we wouldn’t have risked everything [to get him back].

And so with the steely grip that only a tiger mother can possess, Li held on to the car with fierce claws of tenacity; Li gripped onto the steering wheel from outside the car window. Meanwhile, her husband Pan tried to hang onto the car from the rear passenger window.

Only after dragging the parents 100 meters did the carjacker finally succeed in shaking off the parents by driving into a guardrail. However, in his attempt to escape, the carjacker rear-ended a car waiting for a red light. Picking themselves up and hurrying over to the collision, the parents wrenched open the car door, hauled out the carjacker, and were given most brazen reply to a carjacking you can imagine:

“The two of you are trying to steal my car.”

The parents were able to recover their most prized possession and were reunited with the grandmother, but were injured in the process. Pan’s suffered many scratches to his knees and right arm, and Li suffered a concussion to her head.

This sounds like a nightmare for Pan’s family, especially considering it occurred on Pan’s own birthday. However, we should try to sympathize with the real victim here—the carjacker himself, 30 year-old Zheng from Yongzhou, Hunan Province.

On the night of the incident, Zheng had just left his friend’s house and was feeling suicidal after drinking two bottles of beer. It was at that time when Zheng made the decision to steal the victims’ car.

As they await the results of a blood alcohol test stemming from the consumed two bottles of beer, police gave a statement to Nandu that seems to treat Zheng as a victim of circumstance:

Investigating police explained that Zheng simply did not know that there was a child and elderly person sitting in the back seat when he got in, and that he doesn’t have a driver’s license nor knows how to drive.

Oh, so that’s why I’m not feeling outrage at this heinous crime. Zheng happened to have lost his job and his wife last year, and is a sad circumstance that surely must be a gateway to commit felonies after having imbibed a pair of China’s piss-poor beers.

While we sympathize with Zheng’s sad plight, it seems the crime of carjacking a vehicle with a baby in the backseat isn’t taken that seriously even though a similar case last year resulted in the death of a kidnapped baby.

Photo: Nandu



Shenzhen Officials Made RMB 3.5M by Selling Hukou Quota

Posted: 04/22/2014 8:58 am

The importance of China’s hukou household registration system may be paramount to migrant workers seeking urban residence, but to the officials in charge of the system, it’s a gold mine.

According to a April 21 report by Xinhua, two officials at the Pingshan district personnel department in Shenzhen were found to have received more than 3.5 million yuan ($562,000) in kickbacks by siphoning hukou application quotas to an illegal third- party agency.

Shenzhen implemented an hukou application system in which interested applicants, including students, migrant workers and scholars, are granted the right to permanent residency if they have accumulated enough points. Points are awarded for work experience, educational background, property ownership, payment of taxes, and social insurance.

The total number of applicants for Shenzhen residency last year is unknown, but by July 7, 2013, the city had accepted 30,000 applicants through the city’s legal channels for employment, according to iFeng.

He Weicai, director of Pingshan’s personnel department, pocketed 200 residency quotas and gave them to an illegal agency run by Zhang Kuijian. He and Zhang then forged application information in conjunction with Nei Xiaping, another official at the personnel department, the report said.

In return, Zhang gave He 1.8 million yuan in cash. Zhang gave Nie 2.5 million yuan in cash as well as an apartment worth 1.5 million yuan, according to the report.

He and Nie are said to have been placed under criminal investigation.

Photo: Nanfang Daily


Shenzhen Property Management Election Thwarted by Thugs

Posted: 04/21/2014 2:12 pm

guangzhou futian district ballot box election thugs property management

Democracy is simply over-rated; if we, the people, were meant to elect leaders by counting votes, we would have been born with more fingers. While we can compensate by taking off our shoes and socks, the fundamental problem of democracy is that it causes more hassles than it is actually worth.

Consider the recent case of Hongshu Luzhou Neighborhood in Futian District, Shenzhen. At around 10:35am on April 14, a gang of 20-30 pipe-carrying thugs burst into a election to determine the new property management for the neighborhood, Nandu Web reported. Within three minutes of entering the compound, the thugs had stolen three ballot boxes while being recorded in broad daylight.

The neighborhood was voting to determine a new property management after the term for the current management expired in August 2013. Four new property managements were invited to be on the ballot, but not the existing one. For its part, current property management Gonglian Property Management Company has disavowed any involvement with the theft of the ballot boxes.

Property management is an integral part to the running of operations to neighborhoods and buildings. Components like security guards are hired by the property management, a circumstance that allows illegal behavior by security guards to be dismissed later by the neighborhood or institution—a situation much like the Shenzhen hospital that absolved itself of any responsibility after its security guards were recorded abusing a cat and then caught on camera beating reporters.

Tampering with ballot boxes happened before in July 2012 when thugs crashed another Guangdong neighborhood election. The video shows thugs threatening and beating voters before making off with a ballot box. Meanwhile, reform for selecting property management in Shenzhen has proposed neighborhood elections by which voters can submit ballots by text message.

With its ballots now lost, the outcome of the Hongshu Luzhou neighborhood election is thrown into chaos. If there weren’t any elections whatsoever, problems like these would be remedied before they begin. If only we could live in an ideal world in which the responsibilities of the many are shouldered by an elite group that know better—then, at last, Hongshu Luzhou residents can enjoy the harmonious property management they deserve.

Photo: Nandu


Xintang Pirates Steal Water For 10 Years, Worth RMB 10M

Posted: 04/18/2014 7:05 pm

illegal pipes water xintang dadun

You wouldn’t charge money from a river for flowing, would you? Now, what if the river was flowing through your house? And you changed the direction of the river to do that? Is it so wrong to stand fast in the stream as the current washes over you?

Pirates in the village of Dadun, Zengcheng District have been stealing water for 10 years by tapping into the village’s water main, Nandu reports. And this isn’t just a small drop in the bucket — water worth 10 million yuan has been reportedly stolen in a case that implicates half of the village, police say.

When repairing a water main that broke on January 5, workers found five unauthorized pipes that were tapped into the city water source, prompting an undercover police investigation.

It was discovered that Mr Lu, a village committee member in charge of waterworks, and five other people had organized the act of piracy. They blocked off the main gate to the Residential Security Committee building in order to conceal themselves and dig access to the water main.

After getting arrested on March 28, the group admitted they have made similar jobs at two other locations in the village. Besides used by several laundry-washing factories, the water was offered to village residents at rates comparable to those of the water company.

Photo: Nandu


Threatening to Jump, Woman in Zhongshan Falls Asleep During Suicide Attempt

Posted: 04/16/2014 6:06 pm

suicide jumper falls asleep zhongshan guangdong attempted

When is a suicide attempt a cry for help, and when is it a cry for attention? We may never know for sure, but one thing is certain: attempting suicide can make people dead tired, especially for a 50 year-old woman in the city of Zhongshan, Nandu reports.

Emergency services arrived at 10:40pm in the Antang neighborhood of Dayong District to see a woman threatening to jump off a second-story roof. Visibly agitated, the woman continually cried out but rejected any offers of help by emergency responders.

Firefighters were not able to approach the woman since the area was too dark to safely mount a rescue; turning on more lights was simply out of the question. As such, they decided not to take any further action. Instead, firefighters set up an air mattress below as personnel took shifts to watch over the woman should anything occur. It didn’t.

Instead, they found the suicidal woman had settled for dreamland over heaven and had fallen asleep on the roof. When firefighters approached the woman in the early morning hours and inadvertently woke her up, the woman got up and renewed her previous threats of suicide with fresh vigor now that she had gotten a good night’s rest.

Perhaps realizing that living on the roof is rent-free, a neighbor intervened. At 10am on April 15, a full 12 hours after the incident started, the neighbor successfully negotiated with the woman to come down from the roof.

It turns out the woman was upset because her personal ID and cash had been stolen and that she had been beaten up by someone. That being said, it’s still not clear what demands she was making while threatening to end her own life.

suicide jumper falls asleep zhongshan guangdong attempted

Photos: Nandu

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