Corrupt official dodged jail after bribes paid

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 01 October, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 01 October, 2011, 12:00am


A convicted former vice-mayor in Guangdong avoided spending time behind bars for almost two years after being given a 10-year jail sentence for bribery, mainland media reported yesterday.

Lin Songzheng, 56, the former executive vice-mayor of Jiangmen , was convicted in 2009 of receiving nearly 2.7 million yuan (HK$3.28 million) in bribes from a Hong Kong property developer, the Guangzhou Daily reported.

Lin reportedly received the money in return for helping the developer acquire land in Jiangmen cheaply, causing losses of more than 94 million yuan to the government.

As Lin had suffered various ailments before his arrest in 2007, his family tried to help him evade jail by bribing five people involved in deciding whether he was physically fit for jail. Three of them were the head, an instructor and a doctor at the Heyuan detention centre. The other two were doctors.

Lin was subsequently released on the day the court announced its verdict, the Guangzhou-based Southern Metropolis News said.

His immediate release from custody caught the attention of provincial prosecutors, the paper quoted Jin Weifeng, an official who oversees all the detention centres and prisons in the province, as saying. Detectives sent by the procuratorate arrested the five people and brought Lin to justice this year, Jin said.