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Bo Xilai Appeal Ruling Expected Friday

Bo Xilai at the Great Hall of the People during the annual National People’s Congress meeting in Beijing, March 2012. (Ming Zhang/VOA)
A court in eastern China says it will rule this week on the appeal of disgraced former politician Bo Xilai. In a posting on its website Monday, the high court in Shandong province says it will announce its decision on Friday.

Bo was sentenced to life in prison after bring convicted of bribery, embezzlement and abuse of power. He admitted some wrongdoing but denied most of the charges against him at the sensational five-day trial, which was very closely watched in China.

Before the scandal erupted, Bo served in the elite Politburo as one of the Communist Party's top leaders. The charismatic politician also amassed a wide public following as party chief of the megacity Chongqing.

He was removed from his posts last year after his former police chief fled to a U.S. consulate with evidence that Bo's wife was involved in the 2011 murder of a British businessman.

Bo's wife, Gu Kailai, was later convicted of murdering the family friend, Neil Heywood, over a financial dispute. She was given a suspended death sentence, which is essentially a life term in prison.