HONG KONG — Zhou Yongkang, China’s former domestic security chief, was sentenced to life in prison Thursday for accepting bribes, abuse of power and revealing state secrets, according to Xinhua, China’s state-run news agency.
He is the most senior official to be convicted of corruption in the history of Communist rule in China.
Mr. Zhou, 72, was tried in secret in the northeastern city of Tianjin. Xinhua said he admitted guilt and would not appeal his conviction.
Mr. Zhou retired in 2012 after a career of building an extensive power base in China’s law-and-order apparatus and the country’s oil and gas industry.
He had served on the Politburo Standing Committee, China’s highest echelon of political power, from 2007 to 2012, and his downfall makes him the highest-ranking figure to be ensnared in President Xi Jinping’s continuing campaign against official corruption.
Prosecutors called the circumstances of his wrongdoing “particularly grave” when they announced charges against him in April. In its verdict, the Tianjin First Intermediate People’s Court said that the bribes were “extremely large” but had been recovered and that the sentence against Mr. Zhou was in accordance with the “degree of harm to society” caused by his crimes.
Source: The New York Times, Austin Ramzy, June 11, 2015
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