China’s ‘most-wanted’ fugitive held after returning from US


Beijing: A 70-year-old woman who is among China’s “most-wanted” fugitives for alleged corruption has been arrested after the former senior official returned from the US after 13 years, the latest success for Beijing’s anti-graft campaign.

Yang Xiuzhu, who was former deputy director of the construction bureau of east China’s Zhejiang Province, was arrested after her return home, said the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC).

She fled China in April 2003 following an investigation into her alleged involvement in embezzlement was launched, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection of the CPC said.

She was number one on China’s top 100 fugitives, which were released in an Interpol “red notice”, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

Yang is the 37th Chinese to return so far.

China has stepped up efforts to bring back hundreds of fugitives who left the country with large amount of money to escape prosecution.

This was part of the anti-graft campaign initiated by President Xi Jinping in which over a million officials have been punished.

Chinese police brought over 400 fugitives hiding abroad in countries in 61 countries in a campaign called “fox hunt”.

Official estimates say that the corrupt officials fled abroad over the years with over USD 126 billion.