Report: Gu Kailai Confesses to Heywood Murder

The Asahi Shimbun is reporting that Gu Kailai has confessed to killing British businessman Neil Heywood to keep him from revealing the details of her large and illegal overseas remittances, according to Chinese Communist Party sources with knowledge of the investigation:

The sources, who have read an interim investigation report circulated among senior party officials, said Gu, 53, admitted to killing her former associate after feeling “driven into a corner” by the investigation into her financial dealings and had provided a specific explanation about how she killed Heywood.

The General Office of the Communist Party Central Committee, which serves as a secretariat for the party’s General Secretary Hu Jintao–who is also China’s president–drew up the interim report and the sources said officials have decided to indict Gu following her confession.

The authorities are also investigating whether Bo, 62, was aware of his wife’s deeds, the sources said.

They have detained dozens of people associated with Bo–including his chauffeurs, close aides and secretaries from his time as mayor of Dalian, Liaoning province–and have also questioned hundreds of people who dealt with him, including corporate executives and entertainers.

They believe Gu was receiving undeclared income from the early 1990s and that she transferred $6 billion to accounts in the names of relatives and acquaintances in the United States, Britain and elsewhere to conceal her illegal earnings. Heywood is thought to have helped her open accounts and exchange currencies.

Meanwhile, the Cambodian government announced that it will not extradite French architect Patrick Henri Devillers, who reportedly has ties to the Bo family and was arrested last week at China’s request. A Cambodian Interior Ministry spokesman told Bloomberg Businessweek that Devillers has yet to be charged with a crime:

“Cambodia decided to keep him in Cambodia,” he said by phone today. “Concerned authorities are investigating into the case right now.”

China, Cambodia’s biggest investor, is investigating accusations that Bo committed disciplinary violations in relation to his wife, Gu Kailai, who was arrested in April on suspicion that she was involved in the death of a British businessman. Devillers, an architect, had business ties to Gu, Britain’s Telegraph newspaper reported in April.

Cambodian authorities earlier said they would wait for China to submit evidence on Devillers before making a decision on whether to send him to Beijing. Under the two countries’ extradition treaty, China has 60 days to provide evidence of a crime and Cambodia then has 60 days to respond, according to Khieu Sopheak.