Guangdong province has hit the headlines again with the revelation that another of its former high-ranking officials has been found guilty of corruption. Following the conviction of Zheng Shaodong (once deputy head of Guangdong's Department of Public Security) three weeks ago, Xinhua announced today that Wang Huayuan (formerly secretary of the provincial commissions for discipline inspection in Guangdong and Zhejiang provinces) been handed a 2 year suspended death sentence for corruption.
According to Xinhua, a court in the Shandong region found against Wang in relation to charges that he accepted 7.71 million yuan (about 1.13 million U.S. dollars) in bribes between 1998 and 2009, while holding positions that ironically included an anti-corruption remit. As with the case of Zheng Shaodong, Wang has been stripped of his CCP membership, although his capital sentence is likely to be commuted to life imprisonment after 2 years. While this conviction has come about as result of a crackdown on high-level corruption launched last year, the possibility remains that there are deeper political forces at work behind Wang's sentencing. However, it is hard to know what these could be.