Air China

More aviation officials detained in widening corruption investigation

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 29 June, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 29 June, 2010, 12:00am

Three more senior aviation officials have been detained in a widening investigation of corruption in the country's air-transport sector following the suicide of a top official last week.

A section head from the civil aviation administration's air-traffic management bureau and two general managers from China Southern Airlines' scheduling department were taken away by police at the weekend, China Business News reported yesterday.

State media said the section head had the power to approve mainland airlines' routes and schedules, the focus of the anti-graft watchdog's latest campaign against rampant corruption in the sector.

At least seven China Southern Airlines officials, including its chief engineer, were detained earlier this month and are being investigated.

The report said those detained were allegedly linked to Huang Dengke, the aviation administration's north China head, who was put under investigation in November for allegedly selling off premium air routes and time slots.

Meanwhile, footage from a surveillance camera has revealed how Liu Yajun , the aviation administration's chief in central and southern China, committed suicide last week.

He climbed over a wall in Guangzhou and lay on the tracks in front of a high-speed train.

Liu's funeral was held in Guangzhou yesterday and state media reported his coffin was covered with the Communist Party flag, even though he had been linked to the corruption scandal.

Liu, who had been in the position for only 16 months, had been responsible for overseeing the aviation sector in seven provinces, including Guangdong, Guangxi , Hainan and Hunan .

Many high-profile officials from the state aviation sector have been placed under investigation since November, including Yu Renlu , the aviation administration's deputy head, Kuang Xin , the National Development and Reform Commission's top aviation official, and Beijing airport chairman Zhang Zhizhong .