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UPDATE 1-China's GOME appoints new chairman

(Adds public security detentions; Writes through)

HONG KONG, Jan 19 (Reuters) - GOME Electrical Appliances, China’s top electronics retailer, has appointed a new chairman amid a widening police probe into his predecessor’s finances.

GOME 0493.HK last month said it had relieved former chairman Huang Guangyu and his wife from their executive duties after Huang became the target of a police investigation into stock market manipulation, according to the official Xinhua News Agency. [ID:nHKG188047]

Gome’s chief executive, Xiao Chen, had been appointed chairman, the company said in a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange on Sunday.

Chen had been running Gome since Huang vanished in November. The investigation has since widened to include high-ranking officials in the public security bureau, Caijing magazine reported this weekend.

The head of the Ministry of Public Security’s economic investigation bureau, Zheng Xiaodong, had been detained for investigation along with a subordinate, Caijing reported. Zheng is also the top aide to the minister of public security.

Trading in shares of Gome has been suspended since Nov. 24 and will remain so until further notice, the company said. For a statement please see: here

Reporting by Jun Ebias and Lucy Hornby; Editing by Nick Macfie

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