FILE - Wang Baoan attends a news conference in Beijing, China, in this Jan. 13, 2010 file photo. The head of China's Statistics Bureau is being investigated for alleged discipline violation, the ruling Communist Party's anti-corruption watchdog said
FILE - Wang Baoan attends a news conference in Beijing, China, in this Jan. 13, 2010 file photo. The head of China's Statistics Bureau is being investigated for alleged discipline violation, the ruling Communist Party's anti-corruption watchdog said

The former head of China's statistics bureau has been sentenced to life in prison after being convicted of taking bribes equivalent to more than $22 million over more than two decades.

The sentence against former National Bureau of Statistics head Wang Baoan was handed down by a court in Hebei province just outside Beijing.

It was among five newly resolved public corruption cases reported late Wednesday by the official Xinhua news agency involving a combined 488 million yuan ($72 million) in bribes and illicit gifts.

President Xi Jinping has made a public corruption crackdown a central issue since late 2012. In 2016 alone, prosecutions were reportedly launched against 48 officials at the provincial level and above.

Wang was accused of trading political favors for money, sex, property and business concessions.