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Collective punishment for building occupants

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Chongqing Economic Times, June 4, 2010

In November 2008, Yuan Zhengming, a 22-year-old street vendor was walking along the road when she was struck in the head by a metal object.

The object was determined to have fallen from the apartment building nearby, but since no one stepped forward to accept responsibility, Yuan sued all of the households on that side of the building.

She has now been awarded 259,580.57 RMB, to be split among 48 households (60 people). The only defendant who escaped blame, Wang Aitang, had never renovated his apartment after purchase. The court found that he had sufficient evidence that he had never used the flat, and therefore could not have been responsible for Yuan's injuries.

Update (2010.06.09): China Law Blog has an informative discussion of the case in a post and comments thread.

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that's crazy...

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