Three villagers in central China have appeared in court after being bitten by a Tibetan mastiff during a 13-hour fracas with the owners of the dog, which led to the animal being shot dead by police.
The villagers were charged with inciting hundreds of their neighbours to attack the dog’s owners and the police who had been called to deal with the dispute.
Three other villagers also appeared in court in Changge, in Henan province, from October 28 to November 3, charged with causing a public disturbance and encouraging about 300 villagers to confront and attack the couple and police in September 2015, the news portal Thepaper.cn reported.
The dispute started in the village near Changge when one of the defendants spotted the couple fishing in his pond without permission, the court was told.
During the quarrel the couple released their mastiff, which then bit the three villagers, who were later treated for wounds in hospital.
The confrontation went on for 13 hours with the owners of the dog refusing to pay the medical bills of the three villagers that had been bitten.
Police were called to the scene to deal with the dispute as many other residents turned up to support the three villagers. The crowd persuaded police to shoot dead the dog.
The couple were also prevented from leaving the village by the angry crowd, the report said.
They were finally allowed to leave only after agreeing to leave their car behind in the village temporarily.
The court was told the six defendants had encouraged bystanders to try to force their way through a police cordon set up the scene, and throw water bottles at officers and the couple.
They had also encouraged the crowd to confront and attack the couple and damage the uniform of one of the police officers.
All six defendants denied the charges. The court has yet top give its verdict.