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Suspect county official had conviction for rape

WANG Anwu, the director of the grain bureau in Xixiang County, northwestern China's Shaanxi Province, is on trial for embezzlement and bribery in the Hanzhong City Intermediate People's Court.

He is charged with taking 516,000 yuan (US$75,600) worth of bribes and embezzling 1 million yuan, Xinhua news agency reported yesterday.

But Netizens are more outraged at the revelation he had been convicted of rape years before. They are demanding the recruitment procedure be examined and anyone who helped the convicted criminal continue working with the government be punished.

The Xixiang disciplinary authority discovered Wang's rape conviction when it was investigating the corruption case last year. They found out Wang had been jailed for four years in 1984 for raping and molesting four women from 1979 to 1983.

The hardware company he worked for fired him after he was sentenced but re-hired him when he was released two years later. He became head of the county's grain bureau in 2004.

Wang was arrested last year after the local disciplinary authority received complaints from farmers that the government-allocated rice supply was short.

The county launched the rice program to help 20,000-plus local people affected in the May 12 earthquake. Under the 1.75-million-yuan program, farmers got half a kilogram of rice every day for one month.

The authority's investigation confirmed that 10 of the 23 towns covered by the aid program received less rice than they should have; 13,803 kilograms of rice worth 45,555 yuan were missing.

Investigations revealed that one of the two rice suppliers was only filling the 10kg bags with only 8.5-9.5kg of rice.

Police arrested the supplier, Liu Shaoming.

Wang, who was in charge of the rice supply, was suspended from work for self-criticism.


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