More than 600 armed gang members attacked and “tried to repossess” the properties of China Shanshui Cement Group Ltd. (00691.HK) in Jinan, according to China’s STCN news, the latest twist in a vicious boardroom battle in one of China’s largest cement producers.
The violence was reportedly orhestrated by China Shanshui’s company secretary, Yu Chun-liang. Chairman Liu Yiu-keung and chief executive Li Heping were seen in the crowd.
At 4 a.m. on April 8, more than 600 unidentified people, armed with sticks and axes, stormed the headquarters of Shandong Shanshui Cement, a wholly owned subsidiary of the company.
About 20 executives and employees were in the building and several were injured.
As reported, a large local police force rushed to the spot to control the riot and arrested the gangs involved. According to China’s Caixin, Yu and other executives were detained.
However, the management team told a different story.
In a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange issued by chairman Liu, the company said that the directors legitimately entered the properties but were “held against their will by a group of unidentified people led by Mi Jingtian”.
Mi, former deputy general manager of Shandong Shanshui, had been removed from all duties on Jan 12.
Liu also stated that they witnessed the use of weapons such as smoke bombs and high-pressure water guns by Mi’s associates.
The company said that Mi has been terminated from his duties.
A protracted battle for control started when China Shanshui’s rival, Tianrui Group, launched a hostile takeover in April 2015.
After successfully removing the company’s founder, Zhang Caikui, and introducing Tianrui as the company’s largest shareholder, Mi partnered with Liu Yiu-keung and Li Heping as the company’s new management team.
But both sides took divergent views in the proposed placing of new shares in June 2016, according to Caixin.
Translation by Ben Ng with additional reporting
[Chinese version 中文版]
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