Former police chief charged with murder testifies against Bo | world | Hindustan Times
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Former police chief charged with murder testifies against Bo

Under trial Communist leader Bo Xilai continued to be defiant on Saturday but admitted to partial culpability in taking bribes, said he was ashamed of his colleague's flight to a US mission to seek shelter and confessed to adultery. Sutirtho Patranobis reports.

world Updated: Aug 25, 2013 00:32 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis

Under trial Communist leader Bo Xilai continued to be defiant on Saturday but admitted to partial culpability in taking bribes, said he was ashamed of his colleague's flight to a US mission to seek shelter and confessed to adultery.

Bo accepted his culpability in receiving 5 million Yuan (or more than $817000) which was siphoned off from a government project and funneled to his wife Gu Kailai's bank account while he was in Dalian.

The focus of the day's court proceedings was on the allegation of "abuse of power"; Bo is also accused of corruption and embezzlement.

Crucially on Saturday, Wang Lijun, former vice mayor of Chongqing Municipality and its police chief, appeared in court on Saturday afternoon to testify on the charge of abuse of power against Bo Xilai.

Wang was sentenced in September last year to 15 years in prison for "bending the law for selfish ends, abuse of power and bribe-taking."

"Wang, who had served as police chief of Chongqing, covered up the murder case of Gu Kailai, Bo's wife. (The victim was British businessman, Neil Heywood). Wang also entered the US consulate to attempt to defect while performing his official duties, according to the verdict by the Chengdu Intermediate People's Court," state-run Xinhua said.

On his part, Bo told the court that he felt "ashamed" by Wang's flight to the US mission which had reflected badly on the image of the party and country.

Former director of the urban and rural planning bureau of Dalian, Wang Zhenggang, told the court that he was present when Bo told his wife to accept kickbacks from a construction project; Bo at that time was the mayor of Dalian city.

Bo refuted the testimony, saying he had no need for the money as his wife was a successful lawyer and his son's study in the UK was funded through a full scholarship.

He also mocked Wang's testimony, saying: "Is this in line with the way an embezzler would think? Would I say something this sensitive on the phone?"

"It is not even what the most stupid corruption offender would do," he said.

In the previous two days of trial, prosecutors accused Bo of accepting bribes worth about 21.8 million Yuan (about 3.5 million US dollars) from businessmen Tang Xiaolin and Xu Ming and embezzling five million Yuan in public funds from the Dalian municipal government.

The trial continues on Sunday.