China hints at lenient sentence against ex-cop
CHENGDU, China (AP) - China signalled on Tuesday it will be lenient with an ex-police chief enmeshed in a political scandal roiling the country's leadership, saying he cooperated with investigators who brought down a top Chinese politician's wife for the murder of a British businessman.
Wang Lijun's trial in Chengdu city's Intermediate Court concluded on Tuesday without a verdict after two half-day sessions that were closed to the foreign media. Afterward, a court spokesman summarised the proceedings for reporters, saying Wang initially covered up the murder of Briton Neil Heywood.
But, the spokesman said, Wang later turned himself in and provided information to investigators that led to a murder conviction against Heywood's business associate Gu Kailai, the wife of Chongqing Communist Party chief Bo Xilai. She received a suspended death sentence.
The proceedings bring Chinese leaders a step closer to resolving the scandal that exposed seamy infighting and buffeted a delicate transfer of power to new leaders expected to take place next month.