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Chinese President Xi continues campaign against enemies of security agencies

 


Sun Lijun, the leader of a rebel clique of former senior Chinese police officials, has been jailed for life, along with at least two of his allies as President Xi Jinping continues his scorched earth campaign to clean up his enemies to the Ministry of Public Security.

On September 23, Changchun Intermediate People’s Court sentenced former Chinese Vice Minister of Public Security Sun without the possibility of parole, according China’s official anti-corruption website. The court found Sun guilty of accepting 646 million RMB ($91 million) in bribes, manipulating the Chinese stock market and possessing two illegal firearms.

The same court handed down life sentences to Fu Zhenghua, former vice minister of public security and former minister of justice, and Wang Like, the former chief of public security of Jiangsu Province once earlier. Fu, a senior public security official who helped put former public security minister Zhou Yongkang behind bars for life, has now suffered the same fate. A Chinese court found Wang Like guilty of accepting and paying bribes and complicity in organized crime. In particular, the court found that Wang frequently paid bribes to Sun.

January 27, Asia Sentinel reported that a Sun-linked faction posed such a serious threat to Xi that the Ministry of Public Security formed a team to crush it. This clique is now overwritten.

Fu and Wang Like belonged to the Suns political gang, said Takungpao, a pro-Beijing newspaper in Hong Kong. Other Suns gang members included Gong Daoan, a former public security chief from Shanghai, Deng Huilin, a former public security chief from Chongqing, and Liu Xinyun, a former public security chief from China Province. Shanxi, according to Takungpao.

September 21, Gong was sentenced to life imprisonment, DengHuilin was sentenced to 15 years, and Liu Xinyun was sentenced to 12 years and fined 1 million RMB.

Xi is very paranoid about his safety. It’s very difficult to serve a paranoid emperor, a professor who declined to be appointed told Asia Sentinel.

The imprisonment of so many former senior law enforcement officials within three days is part of Xi’s effort to remove senior public security officials he considered a threat, to ensure his security as he seeks an unprecedented third term at the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of China on October 16. Xi’s ambition for a third term exceeds the two-term limit for presidents set by the late Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping. Xi’s bid to extend his presidency has drawn opposition although he is likely to overcome it.

In a article posted on the Ministry of Public Security website on September 16, Public Security Minister Wang Xiaohong called for the eradication of the toxic influence of Zhou Yongkang, Sun Lijun’s political gang and others. Xiaohong called for the elimination of two-faced people and two-faced cliques who are dishonest and disloyal to the party.

From beginning to end, make political security the top priority, inside and outside the country, Xiaohong wrote. He urged his ministry to firmly grasp the fundamental political nature of public security, strongly strengthen public security institutions on politics, and resolutely place the absolute leadership of the party in public security work.

Xiaohong is a trusted protege of Xi, having protected the Chinese leader when he was a civil servant in Fujian province.

Fu’s arrest and sentencing are part of a protracted crackdown on corrupt officials during Xi Jinping’s tenure, which from early 2021 has focused on law enforcement. The scale and scope of the crackdown indicate that police in China may be endemically corrupt, wrote Martin Purbrick, a former Hong Kong policeman, in a article for the Jamestown Foundation, an American think tank, on September 20.

However, the continued arrests of senior officers indicate that Xi and his faction within the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) intend to secure the loyalty of the (Ministry of Public Security) and other security agencies by using the fight against corruption as a control tool. The (Ministry of Public Security)’s complete obedience to the CCP and its reliability in enforcing restrictive social controls is an essential part of China’s expanding police state that underpins one-party rule, he said. wrote Purbrick.

They announced long ago that they would purge the Ministry of Public Security for corruption and nepotism, they followed through, an analyst who requested anonymity told Asia Sentinel.

On September 23 and 22, the Changchun Intermediate People’s Court sentenced Sun, Fu and Wang Like to suspended death sentences with a two-year reprieve. In the Chinese legal system, such a sentence means that Sun, Fu and Wang Like will escape the death penalty if they cooperate sufficiently with the authorities. But if they avoid execution, they will still be imprisoned for life without the possibility of parole, while all their personal property will be confiscated.

Sun and Fu were not immediately sentenced to death because they made major positive contributions by providing evidence for other major cases, the court said. This indicates that the punishment of other senior Chinese officials is imminent.

The court found Fu guilty of accepting 117 million RMB ($16.6 million) in bribes and breaking the law to favor relatives and friends between 2005 and 2021, while he was successively a police officer in Beijing, vice minister of public security, minister of justice and a member of a Chinese government advisory body, the court heard. In 2014 and 2015, when Fu was Beijing’s public security chief, he covered up his brother Fu Weihua’s crimes, helping Weihua escape justice, the court said.

This is a reversal of a once distinguished career. In 2010, Fu, as Beijing’s police chief, pledged to clean up the sex trade in the Chinese capital, reported People’s Daily. On his orders, Beijing police raided thousands of entertainment venues and shut down 35 establishments including the Passion Club, the official newspaper said. While it operated, Passion Club contained high-end prostitutes who serviced wealthy and powerful men.

As Sentinel of Asia reported on January 27, the Ministry of Public Security said that the Suns political gang had seriously destroyed the unity of the party, seriously endangers the political security of the party and the country, in fact admitting that the cabal has rebelled against Xi and posed a threat to him.

A dictator is paradoxically never safe despite his absolute power, the professor said.

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