China will set up a new anti-corruption bureau under a top government prosecutor to handle “unprecedentedly serious” corruption issues, Xinhua reported.
A full-time member of the procuratorial committee at the vice-ministerial level will concurrently head the new anti-graft agency, Deputy Procurator-General Qiu Xueqiang of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate was quoted as saying.
The handling of corruption cases has been hampered by a weak organizational structure and staffing limitations in the past, Qiu said.
The reforms would allow the top prosecutor “to focus on directly investigating big and important cases … and effectively break through institutional barriers in handling cases”, he said.
“We will regard this as an opportunity to strive to make the anti-corruption office into a smart, highly effective, specialized agency with the distinguishing features of Chinese investigation that possesses formidable strength, deterrence and credibility,” Qiu added.
The new agency is expected to deepen the central government’s crackdown on corruption, which was launched during the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China in November 2012.
So far, more than 50 officials at the provincial and ministerial levels or higher have been investigated for corruption and other serious violations of discipline and the law, the report said.
China established the anti-corruption bureau under the SPP in 1995. After almost 20 years of development, it struggled to meet the demands for anti-corruption work under the new situation due to poor effectiveness in handling corruption cases, Qiu said.
In China, corruption probe into government officials are usually handled first by the party’s anti-graft watchdog, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, then the cases are transferred to legal authorities.
Although the authority’s determination is strong, corruption cases are unprecedentedly serious, he said.
“The corruption crimes are becoming systematic, involving an entire family or a group of people. We start with one case and one suspect, and then it turns out to be a whole string of criminal cases, even involving a whole organization or an industry sector,” Qiu said.
He vowed to pursue all cases until the guilty parties are punished to curb the spread of corruption.
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