China tightens anti-graft measures on officials’ families

China says "extreme" corruption cases would get death penalty - © Andy Rain / Pool, EPA

Spouses and children of senior officials in more major cities of China will become subject to restrictions on business dealings following a pilot program in Shanghai, reports said Tuesday.

The decision was made at a meeting of central authorities on Monday  that discussed strategies to end nepotism and regulate the behaviour of officials’ family members, the China Daily reported.

Under regulations introduced in Shanghai last year, spouses and children of ministerial- and provincial-level officials were prohibited from becoming involved in any business operations and their children were not allowed to have businesses in Shanghai.

The rules will be extended to Beijing, Guangdong, Chongqing and the Xinjiang Uighur autonomous region, according to state media.

It is not clear what punishments can be imposed on officials and their relatives who violate rules, or when the new regulations will become effective.

Last month alone, 1,802 officials in Shanghai filed reports detailing the business dealings of their relatives and most of these relatives have since left the business operations, according to the China Daily.

The announcement followed a judicial ruling issued by the Supreme People’s Court on Monday that said officials found guilty of embezzling or accepting bribes of 3 million yuan (460,000 dollars) or more will face a possible death sentence.

President Xi Jinping launched his “tigers and flies” purge over three years ago.

The campaign ostensibly aims to punish corrupt officials in both high and low positions, and has lasted longer and struck at a more senior level than many analysts expected.


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