“Fattest Tiger” in Chinese Anti-Corruption Campaign Pleads Guilty to Accepting $64 Million in Bribes

On August 16, the Chinese news site Sixth Tone reported that on August 15, Xing Yun, former Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of the People’s Congress of Inner Mongolia, pleaded guilty to corruption-related charges in the Dalian Intermediate People’s Court in Liaoning Province, China.

In a story that the Chinese news newspaper Southern Metropolis Daily first reported, Xing admitted to accepting bribes totaling ¥449 million ($64 million).  According to Sixth Tone, Xing “exploited positions he held between 1996 and 2016 to help others get promoted and secure government contracts. In return, he accepted staggering sums in bribes, both directly and through his relatives.”

Xing’s total of ¥449 million reportedly makes him, according to Southern Metropolis Daily’s research,

the “fattest tiger” — or high-ranking official — nabbed since President Xi launched his hallmark anti-corruption campaign in late 2012. Of the 23 disgraced provincial- and ministerial-level officials who have been caught accepting over 100 million yuan each in bribes, 19 were given either life sentences or suspended death sentences that were later commuted to life.

Even before Xing’s plea, in April 2019 the Chinese Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) issued an official notice that stated Xing had been expelled from the Chinese Communist Party “for being ‘unscrupulous in exchanging power for money’.”  Southern Metropolis Daily reported that the wording of the CCDI notice “was notably harsher than previous government statements about corrupt officials.”

Note: Xing has not yet been sentenced, but is scheduled to be sentenced at a later date, according to the Xinhua News Agency.  If recent experience is any guide, Xing, given his former high station and volume of bribe-taking, is likely to be sentenced to life imprisonment, as former People’s Liberation Army general Fang Fenghu, former Vice Minister of State Security Ma Jian, and former party secretary of Chongqing Sun Zhengcai have been over the past 15 months.

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