Chinese Court Sentences Former Banker to Death for $151 Million Bribery

A Chinese court has sentenced Bai Tianhui, former general manager of China Huarong International Holdings, to death for accepting $151 million in bribes. Bai’s political rights were revoked for life, and his property confiscated. The ruling cited the enormous impact and severe nature of his crimes.

PTI | Beijing | Updated: 29-05-2024 10:10 IST | Created: 29-05-2024 10:10 IST
Chinese Court Sentences Former Banker to Death for $151 Million Bribery
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A Chinese court has handed down a rare death sentence to a former banker for accepting USD 151 million in bribes.

Bai Tianhui, former general manager of China Huarong International Holdings (CHIH), was sentenced to death by a court in Tianjin on Tuesday, state-run Xinhua news agency reported on Wednesday.

He was also deprived of his political rights for life and all of his personal property was confiscated. His illegal gains will be recovered and turned over to the state treasury, according to the verdict of the No 2 Intermediate People's Court of Tianjin.

Bai took advantage of his position to aid others in the acquisitions and financing of projects in exchange for huge sums, the court said.

The court ruling said Bai's acts constituted the crime of bribery. The amount of bribes involved was particularly huge, the circumstances of the crime were especially serious, and the social impact was extremely bad, causing significant losses to the interests of the country and the people.

His acts of providing tip-offs for investigation of other cases were not sufficient to warrant a lenient punishment considering the facts, nature, and circumstances of his offences, the court said A host of Chinese officials have been punished in the anti-corruption drive of President Xi Jinping since he took over power in 2012 but the death sentence was rarely given as most of them confess their crimes and settle for suspended death sentences or long-term prison terms.

CHIH is an offshore unit of China Huarong Asset Management (CHAM). It was taken over by the Citic Group and renamed China Citic Financial Asset Management in January, the Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post reported.

Bai is the second China Huarong official to receive a death sentence for corruption. In January 2021, the same court sentenced Lai Xiomin, former chairman of CHAM – and Bai's former boss – to a similar fate.

Lai, who was executed a month after his sentencing, was found guilty of taking 1.79 billion yuan (USD 247 million) in bribes, embezzlement of public assets worth more than 25.13 million yuan (USD 3.46 million), and bigamy.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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