[QODLink]
Asia-Pacific
Bo Xilai deputy charged with defection
Ex-police chief who fled to US consulate in Chengdu, sparking events leading to downfall of his boss, set to face trial.
Last Modified: 05 Sep 2012 20:41
Wang Lijun, right, was Bo Xilai's deputy mayor in the southwestern city of Chongqing [Reuters]

China says the former police chief who sparked off the country's biggest political scandal in recent years has been charged with defection, power abuse and bribe taking.

The official Xinhua News Agency announced the charges against Wang Lijun, who was also a former vice mayor in the southwestern city of Chongqing, on Wednesday.

Wang set off the scandal, which eventually brought down Bo Xilai, Chongqing's powerful communist party boss, after fleeing to the US consulate in nearby Chengdu in February.

During his overnight stay at the consulate, Wang is reported to have expressed his concerns about the death of British businessman Neil Heywood in Chongqing last November.

The resulting dismissal of Bo and the conviction of his wife, Gu Kilai, for the murder of Heywood has rocked the political establishment of China.

In March, Bo was removed as party secretary of the city of Chongqing, with the party citing unspecified violations as the reason.

Gu's arrest and the removal of her husband prompted the biggest political turbulence in China since the bloody crackdown on the Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests in 1989.

The announcement of the charges against Wang indicate a trial will come soon, moving the scandal closer to a resolution before a key transition to a new generation of national leaders this autumn.

199

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Featured
Anti-government secrecy organisation struggling for relevance without Julian Assange at the helm.
After decades of overfishing, Japan is taking aim at increasing the number of bluefin tuna in the ocean.
Chinese scientists are designing a particle-smashing collider so massive it could encircle a city.
Critics say the government is going full-steam ahead on economic recovery at the expense of human rights.
Spirits are high in Scotland's 'Whisky Capital of the World' with one distillery thirsty for independence.
join our mailing list