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Two die in conflict over compound

2014-01-02 09:11 Global Times Web Editor: Li Yan

Two security guards died after an employee from a rival company hit them with a car outside a residential compound late Tuesday in what police said was a fight between property management companies.

The fatal attack capped off a yearlong dispute between the compound's former property management company and its homeowners, who hired a new company to replace it this year, according to a report on the news portal xinmin.cn.

Pudong police said that a Volkswagen Santana crashed into a group of people near the compound's entrance around midnight, injuring six other employees from the incoming property management company. They confirmed that the two companies were fighting over who would manage the compound's maintenance services, which include security.

The compound's homeowners committee signed a contract last year with TL Property Management to take over maintenance of the compound, called Datang Shengshi, according to a news report aired on Shanghai Television Station (STV).

The compound's former property management company, Shengtang Property Management, had been in charge of maintenance at the compound since it was built about a decade ago, said Wang Fangrong, a lawyer representing the homeowners committee. However, the contract ended as soon as the committee was established a year ago.

"According to the law, the old maintenance company's contract expired as soon as the homeowners committee was established. The committee has the right to select a new service," Wang told the Global Times. "It has been quite common over the last few years for old and new maintenance companies to come into conflict as more neighborhoods start their own homeowners committees. Many committees get rid of the old companies when their contracts come up for renewal."

Shengtang sued the homeowners committee in Pudong New Area People's Court last year, demanding that it continue their contract. Although the company lost the lawsuit, it refused to give up the compound even though the committee notified it in December that a new company would replace it, according to a post on the committee's microblog.

A senior TL employee said that company security guards went to the compound on Yinghua Road around 11 pm, according to the STV report. Outside the gate, they found 30 Shengtang employees blocking the gate. They were armed with metal bars and shouted that they would not leave.

One of the TL security guards told STV that a Shengtang employee pulled up in a car and threatened to crash it into the TL security guards.

Police haven't confirmed whether the driver worked for Shengtang.

STV reported that one guard died at the scene and the other died at a local hospital.

Shengtang Property Management was still in charge of the compound's security Wednesday, but TL is gradually taking charge of the other services, said an official surnamed Li, vice director of the compound's neighborhood committee.

Li refused to comment further on the conflict between the two companies.

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