By MARK MCDONALD
More than three-fourths of the cases were for corruption and bribery, notably in the engineering, construction, rail and transportation sectors, and also in finance and real estate, the paper said. Its article cited remarks by Song Hansong, a director of the corruption prevention department of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate.
In a preview of the important 18th Party Congress that is set to begin Nov. 8, the official Chinese news agency Xinhua said in a commentary that “unswerving efforts should be made to combat corruption and ensure clean governance.”
Mr. Song cited the case of Zhou Jinhuo, a former administrator in Fujian Province who has become a kind of poster boy for official malfeasance in China. For the past half-dozen years he has often been mentioned in anti-corruption stories, editorials and Communist Party campaigns.
Chinese authorities said Mr. Zhou took $16 million in bribes in exchange for the awarding of industrial and commercial contracts under his control. He wired the money abroad and then fled to the United States — following his wife, who had already obtained U.S. residency and a green card.
“He is still a fugitive there,” China Daily said.
Chinese netizens coined the term luo guan (meaning naked officials), which refers to officials such as Zhou, who escape trouble by moving their spouse and children, along with their assets, to a foreign country.
They plan ahead by depositing money in accounts under the name of their spouse or children. Even if they are apprehended, the cash transferred to overseas banks often remain the property of family members.
An increasing number of officials engaging in this scam has frustrated investigators and have challenged the level of tolerance for such behavior among the public.
Rendezvous also reported this summer about luo guan:
Wealthy mainlanders, including government and party officials, are feverishly offshoring their cash by buying properties abroad, from Hong Kong and Macau to Australia, Europe and the United States. Hedging against possible political or economic upheavals, they are keeping so few (seizable) assets in China that they’re being called luo guan — “naked officials.”
The Chinese business magazine Caixin reported earlier this year that China’s central bank believes as many as 18,000 officials and employees of state-owned firms have left China since the mid-1990s, fleeing with an estimated $127 billion.
After staging its once-a-decade leadership transition next month, the party will undertake a five-year plan for eliminating corruption, Xinhua has reported, citing He Guoqiang, a member of the Standing Committee of the Politburo.
Mr. He, who oversees corruption enforcement within the party, called the effort a “dynamic and long-term strategic project.” The Xinhua report noted that “China has always paid great attention to fighting corruption and creating a clean government,” using “its own unique methods to combat corruption.”
Two disciplinary and watchdog agencies of the party said recently that nearly three-quarters of a million officials nationwide now receive anti-corruption education every year.
“Education is given through lectures, case studies and visits to historic areas, as well as attendance at court trials and talks with people who have been imprisoned for corruption,” China Daily reported in its story about the party circular.
A county in Guangdong Province in southern China recently lectured the partners of more than 400 local officials in “how to prevent corruption,” China Daily reported. The attendees were taught “how to resist bribes and help their incumbent husbands and wives stay clean.”
“Those attending the class,” the paper said, “thought the initiative was informative and provoked deep thoughts.”
This article was written by MARK MCDONALD and originally published on rendezvous.blogs