The former head of China’s state-dominated economy broke down in tears in court today as he was sentenced to life in prison for accepting bribes.
Liu Tienan was accused of taking 36 million Yuan (£3.7 million) from petrochemical and auto manufacturers from 2002 to 2012.
In his position of deputy chairman of the Cabinet’s National Development and Reform Commission, Tienan could exert significant influence over government policy and had access to highly valuable information.
The case has attracted interest after allegations were first levelled at Tienan by business magazine Caijing journalist Luo Changping on his microblog in December 2012.
Tienan’s life sentence has provoked surprise as the former leader had received a recommendation for leniency from the prosecution after he confessed his crimes in September.
Tienan is the latest prominent figure to fall foul of China’s anti-corruption crackdown, launched by president Xi Jinping in 2012, which also led to the arrest of former Standing Committee member Zhou Yongkang.
A retired member of the Chinese elite’s inner ruling body, Mr Yongkang was arrested on Saturday on charges of taking bribes and leaking state secrets.
His arrest preceded the death sentence a business manager received on Wednesday in south-eastern Guangdong province for embezzlement of an alleged 340 million Yuan.
Additional reporting by Associated PressReuse content