Wang Accepts Charges as Trial Ends

After a secret proceedings in the trial of former Chongqing police chief Wang Lijun started a day early on Monday, John Garnaut of The Sydney Morning Herald reports that the trial of Bo Xilai’s one-time right hand man in Chengdu ended around lunchtime on Tuesday:

A court spokesman, Yang Yuquan, this afternoon said proceedings had been “public” but no independent journalists were permitted into court.

The spokesman made no mention of Bo, who remains in detention under the Communist Party’s internal discipline procedures, although it did praise Wang’s cooperation in investigating the ‘crimes of others’.

Wang accepted that he had taken 3.05 million yuan in bribes, in both property and cash, said the spokesman.

He also accepted that he had “repeatedly” conducted illegal electronic surveillance activities against “many people… thereby severely damaging the socialist legal system and the legitimate rights of citizens”.

And the defection charge was “serious”.

Garnaut adds that Wang may avoid a death sentence after cooperating in the investigations of Bo and his wife, Gu Kailai, who last month was found guilty of murdering British businessman Neil Heywood. In a separate piece filed today, Garnaut recounts what we know about Wang’s February dash to the U.S. consulate in Chengdu, and ponders whether the trial will reveal any more details:

Officially, “the facts of guilt are clear”, says to the official Xinhua report of Wang’s indictment.

But the Communist Party has been having trouble getting people to endorse the official narrative ever since Wang’s overnight stay with the Americans on February 6 was immediately trumpeted over the internet.

“Wang was vice-provincial-level cadre and yet he couldn’t trust the central discipline commission, the procurator or the top leaders,” said a lawyer, Zhou Litai, who proudly displays a framed photo of himself with Wang in his office, next to a bust of Chairman Mao. “What a tragedy: Wang is a creation of the system but has no faith in it.”

China Daily has more on today’s trial:

According to the indictment of the Chengdu City People’s Procuratorate, the defendant Wang Lijun, then-chief of Chongqing’s Public Security Bureau, had neglected his duty of investigating and suppressing criminal acts and bent the law for personal gain.

Prosecutors said Wang knew perfectly well that Bogu Kailai was under serious suspicion of intentional homicide, but he deliberately covered up for her so that Bogu Kailai would not be held legally responsible.

The circumstances are especially serious. His behavior has violated Clause one of Article 399 of the Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China, prosecutors said.

They added that Wang, as a state functionary who knew state secrets, left his post without authorization and defected to another country’s consulate while he was performing his official duty.

Read more about Wang Lijun, Bo Xilai, and Gu Kailai via CDT.

September 18, 2012 2:52 AM
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Categories: Law, Politics