News / Asia

Bo Xilai's Wife Confesses in Murder Case

This video image taken from CCTV shows Gu Kailai, second left, being taken to court in the eastern Chinese city of Hefei, August 9, 2012.
This video image taken from CCTV shows Gu Kailai, second left, being taken to court in the eastern Chinese city of Hefei, August 9, 2012.
VOA News
Chinese state media say the wife of politician Bo Xilai has confessed to the murder of British businessman Neil Heywood and vowed to accept her sentence.

Xinhua state news agency reported Gu Kailai's statement Friday, quoting her as saying the case has been "like a huge stone" weighing on her for more than half a year. She said her actions were the result of a "mental breakdown," but that she accepts responsibility for them.

Xinhua reported on Friday that Gu's statements were made during her seven-hour trial in the eastern city of Hefei a day earlier.

Also Friday, state media say four Chinese police officers admitted to the Hefei court that they tried to help her cover up the suspected poisoning death last November. Until accusations against Gu emerged this year, Heywood's death had been reported as possible overuse of alcohol.

The four had served in Bo Xilai's political stronghold, the southwestern city of Chongqing. Prosecutors said the men forged interview transcripts and hid evidence.

Bo Xilai's wife, Gu Kailai, is at the center of one of the most sensational scandals to rock China's Communist Party.

  • Did not dispute charges she murdered British businessman Neil Heywood
  • Charged with the murder of British businessman Neil Heywood
  • Worked as a successful lawyer before retiring as her husband's career took off
  • Wrote a book about her experience helping Chinese companies win a U.S. legal battle
  • Daughter of a prominent Communist leader

​Verdicts are pending in both trials, which were closed to independent media and heavily guarded.

Analysts say the outcome of the case against the police officials could determine Bo Xilai's eventual fate.  Before he lost his political posts in a corruption scandal, he seemed destined to become one of China's most powerful politicians.

James Feinerman, the co-director of Georgetown Law School’s Asia program, said the purpose of the trial could be to further implicate Bo, leading to his own indictment.

"If you want to conclusively nail down the lid on Bo Xilai's coffin, one of the things you would do is to get these people to admit in open court to having conspired to do this," said Feinerman. "And then the obvious implication is that Bo Xilai was overseeing this, or was at least informed of what they were doing."

Many supporters of the charismatic Bo suspect that the case against his wife is part of a wider effort to ruin his political career ahead of a rare leadership transfer in the Communist Party later this year.

The son of a famous revolutionary leader, the charismatic Bo was a top contender for the Politburo Standing Committee, China's top decision-making body, before he was stripped of his political position.

Bo has not been heard from in months. He has not been charged with a crime, but is under investigation for "serious violations of discipline" by the Communist Party.

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

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debatei
X
Shelley Schlender
July 24, 2014 6:43 PM
In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Death Toll From Israel-Gaza Conflict Surpasses 700

Gaza officials say a shelling hit a compound housing a United Nations-run school in the Gaza Strip, killing more than a dozen people, during an Israeli offensive in the area. Heavy fighting between the Israeli military and Hamas militants continued on Thursday, pushing up the death toll. So far, more than 730 Palestinians and 35 Israelis have been killed in the conflict. VOA's Scott Bobb has the latest from Jerusalem.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Researchers Target Low-Cost Avatar Technology

Scientists at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies say 3-dimensional representations could revolutionize social media. Elizabeth Lee has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid