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Former corrupt Party secretary gets life

A former Party secretary in an eastern China city was sentenced to life in prison today for taking bribes of up to 4.17 million yuan (US$610,500), mostly from subordinates for promotions.

The Anqing Intermediate People's Court in Anhui Province found Zhou Guangquan, former Party secretary of Chaohu City in Anhui, guilty of bribery and not being able to account for large sums of cash, China News Service reported.

The court also ordered the confiscation of all Zhou' property.

Nicknamed by local media as "the government position salesman," Zhou was notorious for seeking bribes for promotions.

The fall-out of the Zhou case led to the sacking of more than 10 senior officials, who were all among the bribe-for-promotion network of the former Party boss.

During his five years as Party secretary of the city, the 60-year-old received more than 80 bribes worth 4.17 million yuan. He was arrested on October 10, 2008.

The secretary-general of the city government, the vice city mayor, and the director of the city's publicity office along with other lower officials got their jobs with bribes, according to the report. All of them were sacked after Zhou' case came to light.

Zhou attempted to cover up his corruption by giving back some of the bribes when officials were investigated.

But he soon started taking bribes again when he was "feeling too lucky to be caught," according to his confession.


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