China's disgraced politician Bo sentenced to life in jail

BEIJING, Sept. 22 (Yonhap) -- A Chinese court sentenced disgraced politician Bo Xilai to life in prison on Sunday, after the court found him guilty of all charges of bribery, embezzlement and abuse of power.

The verdict against Bo, the former Chongqing Communist Party chief who had been once tipped to lead China's top decision-making body, was announced by the Jinan Intermediate People's Court via its Sina Weibo microblog, culminating the country's most high-profile political scandal in decades.

Bo was ousted from the post in March last year after his wife and the police chief Wang Lijun were jailed over the November 2011 murder of British businessman Neil Heywood. Gu Kailai, Bo's estranged wife, was convicted of murdering Heywood and given a suspended death sentence.

Sunday's verdict, which followed a five-day trial from Aug. 22-26 in which Bo proclaimed his innocence, is expected to allow the Chinese Communist Party leadership to wrap up the Bo case and consolidate its authority.

Chinese President Xi Jinping, who took office in March, is ramping up his campaign against corruption.

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