Ex-Chinese vice governor in court over bribery

BEIJING (AFP) - A former vice governor of a Chinese province stood trial on Thursday for taking bribes, state media said, the latest figure to face justice amid a highly publicised anti-corruption campaign.

Tian Xueren, formerly a vice governor of the northeastern province of Jilin, is accused of taking 19.19 million yuan (S$3.9 million) from 10 companies and individuals, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

Tian, who allegedly received the bribes between 1995 and 2011, appeared before the Beijing No. 1 Intermediate People's Court.

The report said that during the period Tian allegedly took the bribes, he had also served in various Communist Party posts, including party chief of an ethnic Korean autonomous prefecture in Jilin. He also formerly served as board chairman of the Bank of Jilin.

Tian was dismissed from all his posts and expelled from the party in July 2012 for "severe disciplinary and law violations", Xinhua said, adding that his "illegal gains have been confiscated".

The verdict was to be announced later.

The anti-corruption campaign by China's new leaders has so far netted a series of low-ranking officials and a handful of senior figures, but no systematic reforms have yet been introduced to tackle what is seen as widespread graft among officialdom.