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» 01/19/2010 16:08
CHINA
Corruption in China: Communist official and Supreme Court justice imprisoned
Government campaign against corrupt officials continues. Former deputy chief justice of the Supreme Court is sentenced to life in prison; party secretary in Hewan village goes to prison.

Beijing (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Corruption continues to be a major burden on China’s development. Recently, a Communist party official and a retired judge of the Supreme Court were sent to prison con corruption charges. Their cases highlight what President Hu Jintao’s government has repeatedly said, namely that corruption is the “main enemy of the Revolution”. Yet the problem seems to be growing.

The first high-profile case involves Sun Xiaojun, party chief in Hewan village (Jiangsu), who was arrested for hiring a gang of some 200 thugs to attack local farmers to force them off their land in order to build a petrochemical plant. During clashes last 7 January, one farmer died and another was seriously wounded.

Instead of the expected outcome, the clashes galvanised residents to fight even harder to stay.  Police, which tried to hush up the farmer’s death and the land seizure, was violently attacked by residents.

In the last few years, the village of Hewan has acquired a reputation for its strong readiness to resist. In 2007 and 2008 in fact, it was the scene of violent clashes when local officials tried to seize their land.

The other case made the front-page of many newspapers. Huang Songyou, a former deputy chief justice, was sentenced to life in prison for taking bribes between 2005 and 2008 for a total of 3.9 million yuan (US$ 574,000). He was also found guilty of embezzling another 1.2 million in 1997.

On several occasions, President Hu has called on Communist leaders to fight corruption, which he has described as the single most important threat to the power of the Communist Party in China.

The People's Daily, the Communist Party's main newspaper, said in a commentary on its website that the sentences show that corruption would be “severely punished”.


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See also
03/12/2010 CHINA
Lawmaker proposes 15 years in prison for petitioning
05/21/2010 CHINA
Beijing admits widespread corruption, 3,000 officials punished
06/24/2008 CHINA
Sichuan quake: 43 officials punished for mismanaging post-quake relief efforts
09/03/2007 CHINA
Real estate and womanising greatest sins in Communist Party
08/30/2006 CHINA
Desperate Communists dust off old code of conduct for top party officials

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