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Bo Xilai Trial Ends After 5 Days of Hearings

Chinese prosecutors have called for a severe punishment against former top Communist Party chief Bo Xilai, whose corruption trial ended Monday after five days of hearings.

Court spokesman Liu Yanjie says the evidence against Bo Xilai is sufficient and the facts are clear concerning charges of bribery, embezzlement and abuse of power.

"Prosecutors believe the Bo Xilai has taken bribes amounting to 21.79 million RMB ($3.56 million ) in total, the amount is extremely large. He has embezzled public money to the value of 5 million RMB ($816,000 ) in total, the amount is huge. He has committed abuse of power, which has led to heavy losses for the country and the people. The crimes of Bo Xilai are extremely serious and he must be severely punished in accordance with the law."

The five-day trial ended early Monday. Officials at the Intermediate People's Court in the eastern city of Jinan said a verdict will be pronounced at a date to be decided.

Bo is accused of taking bribes from a wealthy businessman, embezzlement, and abuse of power.

In his testimony, Bo called his former top aide, ex-Chongqing police chief Wang Lijun, a liar. Wang had told the court that Bo tried to cover up his wife's involvement in the 2011 murder of a British businessman.

Bo said his wife is "insane" and her testimony "laughable."

Bo admitted making mistakes, but denied any criminal activities.

Chinese Communist leaders removed Bo as party secretary of Chongqing last year and threw him out of the Politburo when Wang accused him of involvement in the murder. Bo is also charged with stealing $800,000 in government money set aside for a construction project.

Prosecutors say British businessman Briton Neil Heywood was killed over a financial dispute with Bo's wife, who was convicted of the murder last year and given a suspended death sentence. She will likely spend the rest of her life in prison.

The trial is unusual for China. It is closed to Western media, but courtroom transcripts are being posted on social media. Chinese observers say China's top political leaders have already decided that Bo is guilty and he will get a long prison term.

The trial, which began last Thursday, was originally expected to last two days.

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