China’s Ex-Statistics Chief Jailed For Life For Graft

China’s ex-statistics chief was jailed for life on Wednesday for accepting 153 million yuan ($22.4 million) worth of bribes, becoming the latest senior official to be convicted in a sweeping anti-corruption campaign.

Wang Baoan, the former head of the National Bureau of Statistics, was also found guilty of using his position to help others with such things as loan applications, project approvals and employment, according to a court in the northern province of Hebei.

He is the latest in a long line of officials to be brought down by President Xi Jinping’s unprecedented anti-corruption drive started more than four years ago.

Former China Telecom boss Chang Xiaobing was also sentenced Wednesday to six years in prison and fined 500,000 yuan for graft.

Critics of the crackdown say it is open to abuse for political reasons. The campaign resulted in nearly 1.2 million people being punished by the end of 2016, a senior official said previously.

The writing was on the wall for Wang after he was thrown out of the ruling Communist Party last August for actions including “superstitious activities” and “insatiably” trading power for sex.

The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, the party’s internal anti-corruption watchdog responsible for expelling Wang, described him as “morally bankrupt” and “completely” lacking in political beliefs.

Wang committed his crimes between 1994 and 2016 during which time he held positions in a range of government departments including the tax office and finance ministry.

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