Oddly Enough

Corrupt China official felled by 11 mistresses

BEIJING (Reuters) - A corrupt senior Chinese official was denounced by his 11 mistresses after some of their husbands were sentenced to death for graft, state media said on Friday.

The news comes just days after a senior provincial Communist Party official was executed for blowing up his mistress with a car bomb.

“Second wives” are common among government officials and businessmen in China and are often blamed for driving men to seek money through bribes or other abuses of power.

Pang Jiayu, 63, former deputy head of the provincial political advisory body in the northwestern province of Shaanxi, was sacked and expelled from the Communist Party for graft, Xinhua news agency reported.

“Pang did not expect that he would be brought down by his own 11 mistresses,” the official People’s Daily said in a report carried on its Web site.

Pang, who was also Party boss of Baoji city, had lured several women, mostly “pretty and young” wives of his subordinates, to be his mistresses, it said.

He helped them “make big money” by assigning them or their husbands huge government or other financial projects, it added.

In one water-diversion project in which Pang’s wife and mistresses were involved, water pipes exploded and collapsed only half a year after completion, it said.

The mistresses decided to denounce Pang to the Party after some of their husbands were sentenced to death for graft in cases related to Pang.

The Party’s discipline inspection commission said in July that they would deal with the case severely.

“What awaits Pang Jiayu is severe punishment,” the report said.

Chinese media said this week that 90 percent of the country’s most senior officials punished for “serious” graft in the last five years had kept mistresses.

Duan Yihe, former Party chief of Jinan city in the eastern province of Shandong, was executed Wednesday for blowing up his mistress after growing tired of her constant money demands.

Hong Kong newspaper reports said former finance minister Jin Renqing was sacked last month in part for a dalliance with a local socialite. A government spokesman said he had resigned for “personal reasons.”

With a five-yearly Communist Party Congress due to open next month, and the fight against rampant corruption likely to loom large, official media these days are full of reports of venal officials meeting their comeuppance.

Top leaders have warned that the level of official corruption is so serious that it could threaten the Party’s continuing rule.