As part of President Xi Jinping’s antigraft campaign, a retired Chinese general was convicted by the military court and sentenced to life imprisonment.
In an official report by Xinhua News Agency, the 74-year-old Guo Boxiong, who was one of the top two officials in China’s military before his retirement three years ago, was stripped of from his rank and confiscated all his personal assets.
According to the prosecutors’ report, Guo had confessed to the bribery charges. He was put on trial behind closed-doors as “military secrets” were implicated.
Despite being officially retired, the former general continued to enjoy many of the rights and privileges of his lofty status.
For over a decade during his time, Guo is the commission’s first-ranking vice chairman and was responsible for the daily operations of the 2.3 million-member People’s Liberation Army, the world’s largest standing military.
Meanwhile, Gen. Xu Caihou, who is Guo’s former immediate subordinate on the military commission, was also facing prosecution but died last year of cancer.
Media reports quoted an unidentified military source saying Guo had taken a total of 80 million yuan ($12.3 million) in bribes.
Since March 2015 as expected from Guo’s prosecution, his son, Maj. Gen. Guo Zhenggang, was also placed under formal investigation for unspecified criminal activity and bribery.
Some top generals are also reported to have accrued striking fortunes through massive fraud in both cash and gifts, including cases of high-priced liquor stacked to the ceiling in secret underground caches and even the golden statues of Mao Zedong.
Such unworthy practices are believed to have shattered morale and battle worthiness in the People’s Liberation Army, and as the President seriously acted on military’s wider crackdown on graft and corruption.