Former aide to retired Chinese security chief probed for graft

Former aide to retired Chinese security chief probed for graft

BEIJING - A former aide to retired Chinese security tsar Zhou Yongkang has been placed under investigation for corruption, the government said, the latest move targeting people close to Zhou who is himself subject to a graft probe.

The ruling Communist Party's anti-corruption watchdog said on Sunday that Li Chongxi, head of an advisory body to the legislature in the southwestern province of Sichuan, was being investigated for suspected serious breaches of party discipline and the law, the usual euphemism for graft.

It provided no other details and it was not possible to reach Li for comment.

President Xi Jinping has launched a sweeping crackdown on corruption since taking power, warning corruption is a threat to the ruling Communist Party's very survival, and vowing to pursue powerful "tigers" as well as lowly "flies".

More than 500 lawmakers in Hengyang city in the poor, landlocked southern province of Hunan resigned after being implicated in a bribery scandal, state media said on Saturday.

Zhou, who sources have told Reuters has been put under virtual house arrest, was party boss of Sichuan from 1999-2002, and it became one of his powerbases.

During Zhou's tenure in Sichuan, Li was promoted to a deputy provincial party boss and head of the province's anti-graft body, according to his official biography.

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