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|Official stashed bribes in templeBy Cao Li (China Daily)|
Updated: 2009-07-28 08:29
As mayor of a poor Inner Mongolian city, Xu Guoyuan had a simple way of handling affairs: he would not remember when someone gave him money, and he would not forget when someone didn't.
And as police began to close in on him, Xu began squirreling away money, including stashing a briefcase with 2 million yuan in a temple and hiding the key in the ear of a Buddhist statue, the court heard as his trial for corruption began yesterday.
Xu and his wife, Li Minjie, are accused of accepting bribes of 32 million yuan ($4.6 million) during the six years Xu served as the mayor and vice Party secretary of Chifeng.
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Put in perspective, that works out to an average of 15,000 yuan a day - in a city where nine of 12 counties have average incomes of less than 150 yuan a year.
The Baotou Intermediate People's Court heard yesterday that from early 2002 to July 2007, Xu took bribes from businesses and individuals for land development, project approval and job postings.
Xu was apparently not picky
- he allegedly received Chinese yuan, US dollars, euros, Australian, Canadian and Hong Kong dollars, Japanese yen and Thai baht, as well as gifts that included gold, silver, valuable stones, antiques, paintings and property, Xinhua reported.
In 2006, Xu allegedly accepted property
worth 3.8 million yuan in Dalian, Liaoning province,
after helping a property developer obtain land at a cheap price.
Xu claimed he was innocent when police began to investigate him.
The trial did not finish yesterday.
[ Last edited by caringhk at 2009-7-28 02:38 PM ]