ONE in 10 criminal cases prosecuted in China this year involved Communist Party or government cadres, the nation's top prosecutor said yesterday. The head of the Supreme People's Procuratorate, Zhang Siqing, said that between January and September 5,040 party and government cadres were prosecuted. Twenty were department or bureau heads and one was a vice minister. It has been widely reported that Li Xiaoshi, a vice-minister of the State Science and Technology Commission, would face trial for his involvement in a multi-billion yuan fraud case. Mr Zhang revealed that more than 1,100 of the cadres involved were officials in judicial bodies. They were found to be involved with crimes such as blackmail, accepting bribes and embezzlement as well as harbouring criminals. The senior official was delivering a report on the progress of a crackdown against major cases at a session of the National People's Congress Standing Committee. Mr Zhang warned that the present phenomenon of bribery and corruption had become extremely serious. Although the number of officials involved was ''a small number'' among the cadres, the damages were devastating, he said. The problem had not only directly poisoned the style of the party and damaged the relationship between the party and the people, it had also corroded the values and style of the society, Mr Zhang said. Judging from evidence gathered during investigations, he maintained that the seriousness of the problem of corruption in a region or department was directly related to how superiors behaved. As a result, Mr Zhang said the anti-corruption crackdown must start with the leading cadres in departments. Any cases involving government bodies should be dealt with immediately, he urged. He also revealed that the number of economic crimes uncovered in official financial bodies was far greater than those reported in other departments or enterprises. He said those unlawful cases were mainly involved with embezzlement, accepting commissions and bribes. More cases were also found in departments dealing with monopolies, such as approval of infrastructure plans and land allocation, Mr Zhang said. He said it remained the ''major political task'' for the prosecutors to target major cases in the ongoing anti-graft crackdown. But he conceded that economic and political reforms should be intensified to establish an effective supervisory mechanism. Supervision on the behaviour of state workers as laid down in Chinese laws should be systematised, he said.