Xiongan New Area in Hebei province has launched a special operation to crack down on gang crimes, according to an article posted on the area's WeChat account on Wednesday.
"The operation is designed to fight and punish illegal activities and to create a crime prevention and control system in the area," Liu Baoling, deputy director of the administrative committee of Xiongan, said on Monday at a conference about the area's operations.
Set up in April to help Beijing phase out its noncapital functions, Xiongan New Area covers three Baoding counties－Xiongxian, Rongcheng and Anxin.
Since its creation, authorities in the area have carried out a series of measures to eliminate various forms of illegal conduct, including real estate speculation.
It is the first time a special operation has been mounted specifically to stop gang crimes against people and property in the area.
Major targets of the operation are repeated crimes committed by village bullies, and acts that have been reported to the police by residents over a long period.
Each county was ordered to handle at least one case of gang crimes every month. The operation is being conducted by public security officers from the three Xiongan counties.
They recently interdicted a gang suspected of committing "cruel" petty crimes that vexed local residents.
Villagers expressed relief upon hearing that the bullies were being punished, according to the conference. No details were provided about the gang.
Liu said the officers should make detailed plans to carry out strict measures and encourage local residents to report gang crimes.
He also said the heads of public security bureaus of the three counties must make their mobile phone numbers known to the public so that residents can report crimes conveniently.
"During the operation, if somebody tries to escape punishment by bribing officials in charge of the cases, the officials will also be punished," Liu said.
A WeChat user nicknamed Alichanghangdaoshi said: "Xiongan should not only improve its ecological environment but also its social environment, so that people can live and work securely."