China executes former banker for embezzlement

BEIJING Tue Sep 11, 2007 11:17pm EDT

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BEIJING (Reuters) - China has executed a former state banker for embezzlement and accepting bribes, state media said on Wednesday, days after a senior Communist Party official was put to death for blowing up his mistress with a car bomb.

With a five-yearly Party Congress due to open in mid-October, the fight against rampant corruption is looming large. Top leaders have warned that the level of official graft is so serious that it threatens the Party's grip on power.

Wen Mengjie, 50, former director of the information technology department of the Beijing branch of the Agricultural Bank of China, was executed on Tuesday, Xinhua news agency said, quoting the Beijing No. 1 Intermediate People's Court.

He was found guilty of accepting bribes totaling 10.73 million yuan ($1.4 million) to approve bank purchases of electronic equipment and computer software from 1999 to 2004, Xinhua said. He was also accused of embezzling 4.32 million yuan.

Bank staff tipped off a local anti-corruption bureau, which launched a 10-month probe. Investigators found out that Wen bought three houses in Beijing in 2002 with money "obviously exceeding his legal and reasonable income".

Last week, Duan Yihe, former party boss of Jinan, capital of the eastern coastal province of Shandong, was executed for blowing up his mistress with a car bomb after growing tired of her constant demands for money.

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