BEIJING, April 28 A court in China on Friday
jailed a former chairman of Baoshan Iron and Steel,
who went on to become vice mayor of Shanghai, to 17 years for
bribery and graft, a state broadcaster reported.
President Xi Jinping has waged war on graft for more than
four years, vowing that all corrupt officials, from powerful
"tigers" to lowly "flies", will be weeded out, and warning that
a failure to do so could threaten the ruling Communist Party.
Ai Baojun had used his positions to amass more than 40
million yuan ($5.8 million) in assets from 2000 to 2014, a court
in the southern city of Zhangzhou ruled, according to China
Central Television (CCTV)
Ai is the most senior official from China's financial hub to
be sentenced in the corruption campaign. He could not be reached
The court also ruled that 5.8 million yuan of Ai's personal
assets be confiscated and returned to Baosteel and to Shanghai
city, CCTV said.
Ai was given a lenient sentence due to actively providing
details of his crimes, which he accepted and apologised for, the
court said, adding that many of the bribes were accepted by
relatives without his knowledge.
China's top anti-graft watchdog stripped Ai of his party and
state positions in January 2016 after an investigation found him
guilty of breaking party discipline rules, as well as the crimes
he was sentenced for.
According to his official biography, Ai ran Shanghai-based
Baoshan Iron and Steel from 1998 to 2007 before taking up a
Shanghai vice mayor post until 2013.
He then became head administrator for Shanghai's free-trade
zone, the first such zone on the Chinese mainland.
Dai Haibo, a deputy secretary of the Shanghai government and
former deputy head of the free trade zone, was stripped of his
post in May 2015, following an investigation by the
Cui Jian, vice president of the Baosteel Group, the parent
of Baoshan Iron and Steel, was placed under investigation in
March 2015 on suspicion of "serious disciplinary violations," a
euphemism for graft.
Baoshan Iron and Steel declined to comment.
(Reporting by Christian Shepherd; Editing by Robert Birsel)