News / Asia

Bo Xilai's Son: 'Facts Will Speak for Themselves'

Bo Xilai, right and his son, Bo Guagua (2007 file photo)
Bo Xilai, right and his son, Bo Guagua (2007 file photo)
VOA News
The son of disgraced Chinese politician Bo Xilai says he is confident the "facts will speak for themselves" when his mother stands trial for murder Thursday in the country's most sensational political scandal in decades.

In an email to CNN, Bo Guagua said he has submitted a witness statement to the defense team of his mother, Gu Kailai, who is accused of murdering British businessman and family friend Neil Heywood last November.

Though details of the case are unclear, officials have suggested Gu poisoned Heywood because he made unspecified threats to Guagua. They also say the two may have had disputes over "economic interests."

The closed-door trial, which begins Thursday in the eastern Chinese city of Hefei, is expected to be discreet, brief and likely to deliver a guilty verdict, as is the case with most criminal trials in China.

Neil Heywood, Gu Kailai composite photoNeil Heywood, Gu Kailai composite photo
x
Neil Heywood, Gu Kailai composite photo
Neil Heywood, Gu Kailai composite photo
But Chinese leaders are especially cautious about the Bo Xilai scandal, which came just ahead of a sensitive once-in-a-decade leadership transition in the Communist Party.

Heywood was found dead in a hotel room in November in the southwest city of Chongqing, where Bo had been Communist Party leader. His death was originally thought to be the result of excessive alcohol consumption and his body was cremated without an autopsy.

But the political crisis erupted in February, when one of Bo Xilai's top aides fled to a U.S. consulate in Chengdu. Shortly thereafter, Bo Xilai was stripped of his political titles and placed under investigation for what Chinese officials said were "serious disciplinary violations." Neither he nor his wife have been heard from since.

The scandal has been closely watched by Chinese citizens, many of whom view the trial as an attempt to destroy the political career of Bo Xilai.

The son of a famous revolutionary leader, Bo had been seen as a top contender for the Politburo Standing Committee, China's top decision making body, when seven of its nine leaders step down later this year.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.

You May Like

Ebola Death Toll Nears 5,000 as Virus Advances

West Africa bears heaviest burden; Mali toddler’s death raises new fears More

Jordan’s Battle With Islamic State Militants Carries Domestic Risks

Despite Western concerns that IS militants are preparing a Jordanian offensive, analysts call the kingdom's solid intel a strong deterrent More

Asian-Americans Assume Office in Record Numbers

Steadily deepening engagement in local politics pays off for politicians like Chinese-American Judy Chu More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Comanche Chief Quanah Parker’s Century-Old House Falling Apart

One of the most fascinating people in U.S. history was Quanah Parker, the last chief of the American Indian tribe, the Comanche. He was the son of a Comanche warrior and a white woman who had been captured by the Indians. Parker was a fierce warrior until 1875 when he led his people to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and took on a new, peaceful life. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Cache, Oklahoma, Quanah’s image remains strong among his people, but part of his heritage is in danger of disappearing.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid