A leader of the 1989 Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests has been sentenced to five years in prison on charges of hooliganism, the state-run Xinhua News Agency said Friday.
According to the New York-based group Human Rights Watch, Guo Haifeng, a former Beijing University student, was thought to have been punished for helping another dissident escape to the United States.
But Xinhua, quoting a Chinese official, said the Human Rights Watch report was “sheer fabrication.”
Xinhua said Guo was charged with hooliganism because he seduced six women with promises of love or plans to buy houses.
It said he raped the women, but did not say he had been convicted or sentenced for rape, which is punishable by death in China.
Guo confessed to his crimes and was sentenced Nov. 21 in his hometown of Anyang, about 400 miles south of Beijing, the report said.
Human Rights Watch had reported that Guo was given a seven-year sentence.
Guo disappeared in May during the annual roundup of dissidents before the anniversary of the military’s quelling of pro-democracy protests in Tiananmen Square on June 4, 1989.
He was first jailed during the 1989 protests.
In 1991, he was sentenced to four years in prison on charges of counterrevolutionary sabotage. He was paroled in 1993.