Zheng Xiaoyu, former director of China's State Food and Drug Administration
(SFDA), was sentenced to death by a Beijing court Tuesday morning.
Zheng, 63, was
convicted of taking bribes and dereliction of duty, according to the first
instance hearing of the Beijing Municipal No. 1 Intermediate People's Court.
He received the death penalty on the graft charge and 7 years in imprisonment
for the charge of dereliction of duty. All Zheng's personal property was
confiscated and he was deprived of his political rights for life.
The death sentence was appropriate, according to the court, given the "huge
bribes involved and the great damage inflicted on the country and the public by
Zheng's dereliction of duty".
The bribes taken by Zheng, including cash and gifts, were worth more than
6.49 million yuan (about 850,000 U.S. dollars), according to the court. The
bribes were given either directly or through his wife and son.
The court said Zheng "sought benefits" for eight pharmaceutical companies by
approving their drugs and medical devices during his tenure as China's chief
drug and food official from June 1997 to December 2006.
"(Zheng's acts) greatly undermined the uprightness of an official post and
the efficiency of China's drug monitoring and supervision, endangered public
life and health and had a very negative social impact," the court said.
violated reporting rules and decision-making processes when approving medicines
from 2001 to 2003. He failed to make careful arrangements for the supervision of
medicine production, which is of critical importance to people's lives, said the
The consequences of Zheng's dereliction of duty have proved extremely
serious. Six types of medicine approved by the administration during that period
were fake medicines. Some pharmaceutical companies used false documents to apply
for approvals, the court said.
It is not yet known whether Zheng will appeal.
A report in China Business News earlier this month said Zheng's wife, Liu
Naixue, and his son, Zheng Hairong, had been arrested for involvement in the
case, citing a "well-informed source".
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