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May 24, 2011

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Drugs firm ex-boss on graft charges

THE former president of Shanghai Pharmaceutical Group went on trial yesterday, accused of corruption, embezzlement and misappropriation of funds.

Wu Jianwen was discovered taking bribes totaling more than 12 million yuan (US$1.8 million) - including US$50,000 US - and embezzling more than 38 million yuan, prosecutors told Shanghai No.1 Intermediate People's Court.

Wu also took luxury cars and properties, they claimed.

The 42-year-old doctorate degree holder once had a promising future as he was promoted to president of the large state-owned company in 2008 when he was 39.

The listed company completed restructuring and a merger in 2009 and reported revenue of more than 37.4 billion yuan last year.

Wu, who appeared quite calm in court, pleaded guilty to many of the charges.

But with regards to the corruption and embezzlement charges, he told the court he "did not take a penny."

Prosecutors said Wu took his first bribe back in 2000 when he met a construction and decoration company manager, surnamed Guo. Wu was then the general manager of another pharmaceutical company which was inviting bids to construct a building.

Investigations began early last year and Wu was put in custody last August.


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