China's anti-graft campaign: A look at the big fish netted recently

Liu Tienan (centre), the former deputy head of China's top planning agency, stands during his verdict at a court in Langfang, Hebei province, in this Dec 10, 2014 handout photo supplied by the Langfang Intermediate People's Court. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Liu Tienan (centre), the former deputy head of China's top planning agency, stands during his verdict at a court in Langfang, Hebei province, in this Dec 10, 2014 handout photo supplied by the Langfang Intermediate People's Court. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
China's former Politburo Standing Committee Member Zhou Yongkang attends the closing ceremony of the National People's Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing in this March 14, 2012 file photo. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
China's former Politburo Standing Committee Member Zhou Yongkang attends the closing ceremony of the National People's Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing in this March 14, 2012 file photo. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

Chinese President Xi Jinping launched a crackdown on graft in 2012, targeting officials and individuals from the Chinese Communist Party, the bureaucracy, the military and state-owned enterprises. Two years, on, the campaign is still going strong. About 1,000 government officials have been removed from power. Here are some big fish who have been netted recently.

Ding Yuxin also known as Ding Shumiao

The Chinese businesswoman was fined 2.5 billion yuan (S$529.13 million) and given a 20-year prison sentence on Dec 16. She was found guilty of colluding with former railway minister Liu Zhijun, who was jailed in 2013 for corruption. Ding had taken two billion yuan (S$423.31 million) in "agent fees" for helping Liu set up 57 rail projects involving 23 companies. The 58-year-old also gave Liu 49 million yuan in bribes , reported Chinese media.

Ni Fake

Anhui province's vice-governor Ni Fake admitted to taking 13 million yuan (S$2.7million) in bribes consisting largely of precious stones, reported state media Tuesday. Ni had a "craving for jade", according to Chinese reports. He told a court in China that he had accepted 49 bribes, including cash, gemstones and artworks.

Zhang Zhijiang

On Dec 15, 2014, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection said on its website that it is investigating a senior executive from China Unicom for graft. Zhang, the general manager responsible for network construction, was suspected of "serious violation of discipline", The commission did not give any details of the investigation. The term "serious violation of discipline" is usually used to denote suspected graft.

Liu Tienan

The former top economic official was on Dec 10 jailed for life in China for accepting 35.58 million yuan (S$7.6 million) in bribes. Liu was the deputy director of China's top economic planning agency National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) until he was sacked in August 2013. The corruption came to light after a former lover went public with a litany of accusations against him.

Zhou Yongkang

China's Communist Party expelled the former security chief on Dec 5, accusing him of leaking official secrets in addition to expected graft allegations. An investigation found that Zhou "seriously violated the Party's political, organizational and confidentiality discipline", Xinhua News Agency reported, citing a government statement. Zhou abused his powers to help his friends make profits and accepted "huge bribes" personally and through his family, it said. Zhou, a former member of the party's top decision-making body, the Politburo Standing Committee, is the highest-ranking official so far to be netted in the anti-graft crackdown.

jalmsab@sph.com.sg

Sources: Xinhua News Agency, The Straits Times, Reuters, South China Morning Post