• By The Financial District

CHINA EXECUTES OFFICIAL CONVICTED OF RECEIVING BRIBES

The former head of a Chinese state-owned asset management company was executed Friday, January 29, 2021, on charges of taking bribes in an unusually severe penalty for a recent corruption case, Joe McDonald reported for the Associated Press (AP).

Lai Xiaomin of China Huarong Asset Management Co., was among thousands of officials snared in a long-running anti-graft campaign led by President Xi Jinping.


Others including China’s former insurance regulator have been sentenced to prison. Lai, 58, was put to death by a court in Tianjin, east of Beijing, the government announced.


The Second Intermediate People’s Court of Tianjin ruled in January that death was justified because Lai took “especially enormous” bribes to make investments, offer construction contracts, help with promotions and provide other favors.


Lai asked for or collected 1.8 billion yuan ($260 million) over a decade, the court said. It said one bribe exceeded 600 million yuan ($93 million).


He was also convicted of embezzling more than 25 million yuan ($4 million) and starting a second family while still married to his first wife.


Lai “endangered national financial security and financial stability,” said a commentary on the state TV website. The death penalty “was his own responsibility, and he deserved it,” the commentary said.


Most death sentences imposed by Chinese courts are suspended for two years and usually are commuted to life.


Death penalties without the chance of a reprieve are rare. Huarong is one of four entities created in the 1990s to buy nonperforming loans from government-owned banks. They expanded into banking, insurance, real estate finance and other fields.



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