China's official news agency says three police officers and four other people helping them have been convicted of torturing suspects to obtain confessions.

Xinhua News Agency said one of the cases ended in the death of a man after he had been tortured with electric shocks and hit on the head and face with a shoe.

The seven cases all happened in March 2013 at a police station in Harbin city in China's northeast. The seven defendants were given prison sentences of up to 2 1/2 years.

Chinese authorities have said that the problem of coerced confessions has been effectively addressed by new measures in the last five years, including video recording police interrogations and calling on judges to reject evidence obtained through torture.