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Bo Xilai

Chinese Communist "princeling" Bo Xilai, expected by many to take a key leadership position in the leadership transition of 2012, was expelled from the Communist Party in September after a career that saw him as Mayor of Dalian City, Minister of Commerce and Party Chief of the Chongqing municipality. His wife Gu Kailai received a suspended death sentence in August 2012 for murdering British business partner Neil Heywood. 


Heywood lawyer adds new twist ahead of Bo Xilai trial

He says media statement on compensation deal was not issued by family of murdered Briton

PUBLISHED : Monday, 19 August, 2013, 9:10pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 20 August, 2013, 5:51pm

A mainland lawyer representing the family of a British businessman whose murder triggered the downfall of former Politburo member Bo Xilai yesterday disputed the authenticity of a statement reportedly issued by the Briton's mother, three days ahead of Bo's open trial.

He Zhengsheng , the lawyer who said he was hired by Neil Heywood's family, wrote on his verified Sina Weibo account that the statement issued recently "in some individual media" on the compensation deal over the murder case "contradicted the existing facts and was misleading the public".

Last week The Wall Street Journal carried a statement it said was issued by Ann Heywood, Neil's mother, who urged the Chinese authorities to show "decisiveness and compassion" over the family's request to seek financial compensation to ensure the well-being of Neil Heywood's two children.

Ann, breaking her silence for the first time since her son was poisoned by Bo's wife, Gu Kailai , two years ago, said in the statement she was disappointed that the authorities had so far failed to give them any substantial response despite the family's "repeated discreet approaches".

"The statement was not released by the family of Neil Heywood," said He in a phone interview with the South China Morning Post, adding that negotiations between lawyers for Heywood and Gu were continuing.

Ali Bullock, a spokesman for The Wall Street Journal, said: " The Journal accurately reported the content of a statement released by Ann Heywood."

A source with knowledge of the Heywood family said Ann and Wang Lulu, Heywood's Chinese widow, had different opinions on how to handle the compensation process.

His statement added another twist to the trial of Bo, who will be tried on Thursday in Jinan for bribery, embezzlement and abuse of power.

Observers believe the strong-willed politician may contest some of the charges. A mainland media source said Bo had not confessed to anything by late last week. "Bo has been calling for an open trial, at which he believes he could make his own defence."

A friend of the Bo clan said the family "would do something" if the verdict was harsher than they expected.

Heywood, who worked in China, was found dead in his Chongqing hotel room in November 2011. Authorities at the time announced the cause of death as alcohol poisoning.

However, soon after, Chongqing police chief Wang Lijun, fled to the US consulate in Chendu where he claimed that he had helped Bo's wife, Gu, kill Heywood. She was later found guilty of poisoning the businessman and long-time friend of the couple.



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That would be the case, except for the fact that Bo's lieutenant, Wang LeJun, sought political refuge in a US Consulate, which negotiated his surrender to a special branch of the Chinese Central Commission on Internal Discipline. Because of this humiliating situation, the "old men and a single old-woman" of the CCPC is seeking a public trial to save face and to curtail further discussion of elite cronyism and rampantly-systematic corruption/abuse of powers pervasive within its ranks over the last two decades. The uniquely embarrassing though seldom-discussed fact lies in the ineptitude of the Chinese State Security apparatus in not-discovering a secret mole (Neil Hayward) in its top echelon. Bo was destined to be named as the supreme-head of China State and Public Security as well as Judiciary and would have been compromised by its relationship with the late Mr. Hayward. If not for Mr. Hayward's untimely demise, Bo's inside knowledge of the workings within the CCPC, its military and security commissions as well as weaknesses of China's standing committee members would have been a major boon for Britain's MI6. Too bad!
I am befuddled and surprised that responsible officers of the Chinese State Security Office are allowed to keep their position given this breach and the subsequent defection of Wang LeJun to the US Consulate in Chongqing. Perhaps, economic interests of high-ranking officials have taken precedence over national security in China!
Crooks, crooks, and more crooks.
this situation is bizarre;
Gu had BEGGED Haywards wife to have the body cremated, which she stupidly agreed too
You scr** the wife of a government official, you get your hands burnt (or poisoned in this case). In Russia they just top you in the streets of Moscow, or give you some radiation poisoning. That's how it works.


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