CHINA. FORMER BEIJING VICE MAYOR GIVEN SUSPENDED DEATH PENALTY FOR BRIBERY
October 19, 2008: Beijing's former vice mayor Liu Zhihua was sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve for taking bribes, local media reported, citing a court ruling.
Liu, 59, was charged with taking bribes of about 6.97 million yuan (1.02 million U.S. dollars) when he was vice mayor of Beijing and director of the management committee of Zhongguancun Science Park from 1999 to 2006, according to Hengshui Intermediate People's Court in neighboring Hebei Province.
The court said the bribes were pocketed by Liu and his mistress Wang Jianrui. Liu abused his power to get contract projects, loans and offer promotions for others in exchange for profits.
Liu's lawyer Mo Shaoping said Liu did not decide whether to appeal or not.
Liu was removed from the post of Beijing vice mayor in June 2006 and expelled from the Communist Party of China (CPC) six months later.
He had been head of the Beijing labor bureau, secretary of the CPC Committee of Xicheng District in Beijing and secretary general of Beijing municipal government. In 1999, he was elected vice mayor of the capital, a job that oversaw construction, real estate, sports and traffic projects around the city. (Sources: Xinhua, 19/10/2008)