News / Asia

Top Chinese Military Official Accused of Amassing Illegal Wealth

FILE - A golden bust of the late Chairman Mao Zedong.
FILE - A golden bust of the late Chairman Mao Zedong.
VOA News
Chinese media are reporting on a rare publicized case of corruption in the army leadership. A Chinese general in charge of army logistics allegedly abused his power to amass dozens of homes, gold statues and expensive wine.

The excesses of Lieutenant General Gu Junshan were uncovered by Caixin, a prominent magazine famous for its investigative reporting and extensive coverage of China's corruption scandals.

The magazine reported that Gu's home in Puyang, a grey courtyard compound modeled after the Forbidden City in Beijing, was raided over a year ago. Police filled four trucks with Gu's expensive possessions, including a golden boat, a golden basin and a golden statue of Mao.

Residents of the village told Caixin that investigators spent two days seizing property from the residence, known in the village as the “General's Mansion,” but would only load trucks at night to avoid creating “dissatisfaction among the villagers.”

According to the expose', Gu's brother lived in a house next door, and the two properties were connected through a 30-meter-long basement packed with “crates” of expensive Chinese wine.

Chinese leaders have publicized their ongoing anti-graft efforts as a serious step at stemming corruption and have said they will intensify the campaign in 2014.
 
But the details of Gu's wealth show that corruption in China can stretch beyond people's imagination, says Beijing University anti-corruption professor He Bing.
 
He said the timing of the report in the first few weeks of the new year sends a powerful message.

“The anti-graft effort has no forbidden spots,” he said, “A new year has started with Xi Jinping's pronouncements against corruption, and this report is a symbolic sign of that resolution.”

Chinese leaders devoted numerous speeches and resources to fighting corruption last year. According to the country's top anti-graft body, such efforts were effective and led to the investigation and punishment of more than 182,000 party officials in 2013 for various extents of abuse of power.

According to Caixin, Gu took advantage of his position as the manager of military real estate deals and building projects to benefit himself and other members of his family.

Dozens of apartments Gu owned in central Beijing were destined to be given out as gifts, Caixin reported.

Gu's alleged illegal wealth touches an especially sensitive nerve, given that he had made a career within the prestigious People's Liberation Army.

On Friday, the Communist Party-controlled Global Times said in an editorial that Gu Junshan should be severely investigated.

“The circumstances of the investigation should be disclosed and clarified to the public and the media,” the editorial read, ”Government corruption is an illness, but corruption within the armed forces is a danger.”

So far, Gu has not been officially indicted, but rumors abound.

As early as 2012, his name was removed from the website of the Ministry of Defense. In January 2013 came the house search detailed in Caixin's report, and a few months later a professor at the PLA National Defence University told state media that Gu was involved in a corruption case.

The lack of an official statement by the party's disciplinary commission, which usually notifies the media after cadres are put under investigation, has led some to believe that Gu's case might go beyond his personal abuses of power.

“Behind Gu Junshan there might be an even bigger tiger - or corrupt official,” wrote blogger Zhou Pengan. “Even if they are pursuing bigger cases, the anti-corruption body should not let a case drag on so long without resolution.”

He Bing said that it is unclear why it's taking so long for authorities to announce the investigation, but he adds that with the media attention around the scandal it should not take long before Gu is officially indicted.

“The anti-graft effort has no forbidden spots. A new year has started with Xi Jinping's pronouncements against corruption, and this report is a symbolic sign of that resolution,” He Bing stated.

You May Like

Australia-Cambodia Resettlement Agreement Raises Concerns

Agreement calls for Cambodia to accept refugees in return for $35 million in aid and reflects Australia’s harder line approach towards asylum seekers and refugees More

India Looks to Become Arms Supplier Instead of Buyer

US hopes India can become alternative to China for countries looking to buy weapons, but experts question growth potential of Indian arms industry More

Earth Day Concert, Rally Draws Thousands in Washington

President Obama also took up the issue Saturday in his weekly address, saying there 'no greater threat to our planet than climate change' More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Wangchuk from: NY
January 21, 2014 11:57 AM
Corruption is endemic in a one party state like the PRC. If one Party controls nearly everything including the govt, the military, major industries, the media, and the courts, there will always be corruption. The only way to end massive corruption in China is to allow free & fair elections with a democratically elected govt and to permit free speech, an independent judiciary, and a free media.
In Response

by: Anonymous from: China
January 21, 2014 10:12 PM
The problem is that the CPC will never let this happen, they will not sacrifice their own benefits, even though very body knows that what you write are the rooted prescription

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Are Energy Needs Putting Thailand's Natural Beauty at Risk?i
X
Steve Sandford
April 17, 2015 12:50 AM
Thailand's appetite for more electricity has led to the construction of new dams along the Mekong River to the north and new coal plants near the country's famous beaches in the south. A proposed coal plant in a so-called "green zone" has touched off a debate. VOA's Steve Sandford reports.
Video

Video Are Energy Needs Putting Thailand's Natural Beauty at Risk?

Thailand's appetite for more electricity has led to the construction of new dams along the Mekong River to the north and new coal plants near the country's famous beaches in the south. A proposed coal plant in a so-called "green zone" has touched off a debate. VOA's Steve Sandford reports.
Video

Video Overwhelmed by Migrants, Italy Mulls Military Action to Stabilize Libya

Thousands more migrants have arrived on the southern shores of Italy from North Africa in the past two days. Authorities say they expect the total number of arrivals this year to far exceed previous levels, and the government has said military action in Libya might be necessary to stem the flow. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Putin Accuses Kyiv of ‘Cutting Off’ Eastern Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin, in his annual televised call-in program, again denied there were any Russian troops fighting in Ukraine. He also said the West was trying to ‘contain’ Russia with sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports on reactions to the president’s four-hour TV appearance.
Video

Video Eye Contact Secures Dog's Place in Human Heart

Dogs serve in the military, work with police and assist the disabled, and have been by our side for thousands of years serving as companions and loyal friends. We love them. They love us in return. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports on a new study that looks at the bio-chemical bond that cements that human-canine connection.
Video

Video Ukrainian Volunteers Search for Bodies of Missing Soldiers

As the cease-fire becomes more fragile in eastern Ukraine, a team of volunteer body collectors travels to the small village of Savur Mohyla in the what pro-Russian separatists call the Donetsk Peoples Republic - to retrieve bodies of fallen Ukrainian servicemen from rebel-held territories. Adam Bailes traveled with the team and has this report.
Video

Video Xenophobic Violence Sweeps South Africa

South Africa, long a haven for African immigrants, has been experiencing the worst xenophobic violence in years, with at least five people killed and hundreds displaced in recent weeks. From Johannesburg, VOA’s Anita Powell brings us this report.
Video

Video Sierra Leone President Koroma Bemoans Ebola Impact on Economy

In an interview with VOA's Shaka Ssali on Wednesday, President Ernest Koroma said the outbreak undermined his government’s efforts to boost and restructure the economy after years of civil war.
Video

Video Protester Lands Gyrocopter on Capitol Lawn

A 61-year-old mailman from Florida landed a small aircraft on the Capitol lawn in Washington to bring attention to campaign finance reform and what he says is government corruption. Wednesday's incident was one in a string of security breaches on U.S. government property. Zlatica Hoke reports the gyrocopter landing violated a no-fly zone.
Video

Video Apollo 13, NASA's 'Successful Failure,' Remembered

The Apollo 13 mission in 1970 was supposed to be NASA's third manned trip to the moon, but it became much more. On the flight's 45th anniversary, astronauts and flight directors gathered at Chicago's Adler Planetarium to talk about how the aborted mission changed manned spaceflight and continues to influence space exploration today. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video Badly Burned Ukrainian Boy Bravely Fights Back

A 9-year-old Ukrainian boy has returned to his native country after intensive treatment in the United States for life-threatening burns. Volodia Bubela, burned in a house fire almost a year ago, battled back at a Boston hospital, impressing doctors with his bravery. Faith Lapidus narrates this report from VOA's Tetiana Kharchenko.
Video

Video US Maternity Leave Benefits Much Less Than Many Countries

It was almost 20 years ago that representatives of 189 countries met at a UN conference in Beijing and adopted a plan of action to achieve gender equality around the world. Now, two decades later, the University of California Los Angeles World Policy Analysis Center has issued a report examining what the Beijing Platform for Action has achieved. From Los Angeles, Elizabeth Lee has more.
Video

Video Endangered Hawaiian Birds Get Second Chance

Of the world's nearly 9,900 bird species, 13 percent are threatened with extinction, according to BirdLife International. Among them are two Hawaiian honeycreepers - tiny birds that live in the forest canopy, and, as the name implies, survive on nectar from tropical flowers. Scientists at the San Diego Zoo report they have managed to hatch half a dozen of their chicks in captivity, raising hopes that the birds will flutter back from the brink of extinction. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Exhibit Brings Renaissance Master Out of the Shadows

The National Gallery of Art in Washington has raised the curtain on one of the most intriguing painters of the High Renaissance. Mostly ignored after his death in the early 1500s, Italian master Piero di Cosimo is now claiming his place alongside the best-known artists of the period. VOA’s Ardita Dunellari reports.
Video

Video Sidemen to Famous Blues Artists Record Their Own CD

Legendary blues singer BB King was briefly hospitalized last week and the 87-year-old “King of the Blues” may not be touring much anymore. But some of the musicians who have played with him and other blues legends have now released their own CD in an attempt to pass the torch to younger fans... and put their own talents out front as well. VOA’s Greg Flakus has followed this project over the past year and filed this report from Houston.
Video

Video Iran-Saudi Rivalry Is Stoking Conflict in Yemen

Iran has proposed a peace plan to end the conflict in Yemen, but the idea has received little support from regional rivals like Saudi Arabia. They accuse Tehran of backing the Houthi rebels, who have forced Yemen’s president to flee to Riyadh, and have taken over swaths of Yemen. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA, analysts say the conflict is being fueled by the Sunni-Shia rivalry between the two regional powers.

VOA Blogs