Former CPC Chongqing secretary Bo Xilai who was widely known for his crackdowns on crime syndicates will face trial on Thursday for alleged corruption involving his wife Gu Kailai and the death of British citizen Neil Heywood, the Chinese language World Journal reported yesterday.
Once considered to be a favorite candidate for selection to the Politburo standing committee, the reform-minded political star saw his career cut short after Chungqing Public Security Bureau chief Wang Lijun sought asylum at the U.S. consulate in Chengdu in February of 2012.
Although Wang walked out of the consulate on his own free will, the political scandal that followed resulted in the removal of Bo from his post and the CPC party and exposed Gu's property acquisitions abroad that had been made through Heywood before his death in 2011.
Prosecutors charged Gu for Heywood's murder in July 2012. Gu was convicted after a one-month trial.
Bo's corruption trial will take place in Jinan, Shandong Province where he will face charges of embezzlement, bribery, and abuse of power. The trial will be open to the public, an unusual move by the CPC.
Speculation by the Chinese media have centered on whether or not Gu will provide evidence against her husband and even testify in court against him.
British newspaper The Guardian reported that Heywood's family are seeking 50 million yuan in compensation for Heywood's death.
Analysts said that the high-profile trial of Bo will be a test of PRC president Xi Jinping's anti-corruption movement.