[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
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Israel's Operation Protective Edge is the third major offensive on the Gaza Strip in six years.
Muslims and Arabs in the US say they face discrimination in many areas of life, 13 years after the 9/11 attacks.
At one UN site alone, approximately four children below the age of five are dying each day.
Featured
A political power struggle masquerading as religious strife grips Nigeria - with mixed-faith couples paying the price.
The current surge in undocumented child migrants from Central America has galvanized US anti-immigration groups.
Absenteeism among doctors at government hospitals is rife, prompting innovative efforts to ensure they turn up for work.
Marginalised and jobless, desperate young men in Nairobi slums provide fertile ground for al-Shabab.
The Khmer Rouge tribunal is set to hear genocide charges for targeting ethnic Vietnamese and Cham Muslims.
join our mailing list