'Political Prisoner' Matthew Ng Freed From NSW Jail

The businessman warns Aussies not to do business with China.

15/06/2016 6:03 PM AEST | Updated 15/07/2016 12:54 PM AEST

An Australian "political prisoner" who was locked up in China on corruption and embezzlement charges then sent to Australia to serve out his sentence has been freed from prison.

Businessman Matthew Ng was sentenced to 13 years in a Chinese jail in December 2011, with his jail term later cut to 11-and-a-half years.

He was charged with numerous white collar crimes in China including bribery for offering a board seat to the principal of a company that his firm had acquired.

In 2014, Ng was the first inmate transferred to Australia under a 2011 prisoner transfer deal to serve the rest of his sentence.

He has been called Australia's "first political prisoner" because lawyers say his actions would not have met local criminal standards.

Justice Minister Michael Keenan said on Wednesday that Ng's application for early release from prison due to exceptional family circumstances had been granted.

"I am satisfied exceptional circumstances exist to justify Mr Ng's early release from prison," Keenan said in a statement.

Speaking after his release from Sydney's Silverwater prison, Ng warned Australians about trading with China.

"Don't do it. Don't do it. Because not only will you lose your money, you'll lose your life and your family. And that is what happened to me," he told the ABC.

"What they've done to me they can do to anybody."

Ng was born in China, became an Australian citizen, then went back to his homeland as a tourism operator but later got into trouble after a fallout with his Chinese business partner.

According to the ABC, his 14-year-old daughter died while he was in prison in China and his wife is now gravely ill.

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