Thu, Jul 26, 2007 - Page 1 News List

Former Shanghai boss ousted from PRC's legislature

AP, BEIJING

The disgraced former Chinese Communist Party (CCP) boss of Shanghai has been kicked out of China's legislature, moving him one step closer to formal legal prosecution, a news report said.

Chen Liangyu (陳良宇) -- the highest-level party official to be dismissed in a decade -- was removed from the National People's Congress, the financial magazine Caijing said in a story posted on its Web site late on Tuesday.

report

A report on Chen's dismissal was also posted on the Web site of a state-run television station but was later taken down.

The Caijing report said Chen was dismissed at a meeting on Tuesday of the Standing Committee of the Shanghai People's Congress.

"Chen Liangyu's dismissal means that a nearly one-year long inspection is reaching the end and will enter into formal judicial procedures," Caijing said.

It said he was removed for "a serious breach of discipline."

Chen is accused of being at the center of a scandal last year over the alleged misuse of about US$400 million in pension funds that were improperly invested in real estate and road toll projects.

The scandal came as the CCP was cracking down on widespread corruption ahead of a party congress later this year.

refusal

Shanghai government spokeswoman Jiao Yang (焦揚) refused to answer questions about Chen at a news conference on Tuesday.

"We are not authorized to answer this question," she said.

Shanghai government officials announced in May that all the misused funds had been recovered, but the results of a secretive investigation into the case have yet to be announced.

Earlier this year, the head of Shanghai's multimillion dollar Formula One auto racing track, Yu Zhifei (郁知非), was fired in connection with the scandal. Yu, thought to be a close associate of Chen, is one of more than a dozen people reportedly targeted in the probe.

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