Founder of solar energy industry charged with embezzlement

Updated: 2006-11-28 17:25

Xue Zuqing, one of China's foremost experts on solar energy and associate professor with the prestigious Qinghua University, went on trial on Monday for embezzling more than one million yuan (125,000 U.S. dollars).

Xue, 58, who has been dubbed the founder of China's solar energy heater industry, allegedly transferred to his wife's bank account a million yuan from the Qinghua Solar Co. Ltd in August 2002. The money was later used by his sister to pay for a new apartment, according to a court in Beijing's west Haidian District.

Xue, then general manager of the company, concealed the loan after he was dismissed from the post in March 2003, said a report on Tuesday's Beijing News.

The company, jointly set up by Qinghua University and a local glass factory, established the fund by selling 20 percent of its stocks to a solar energy research institute in east China's Shandong Province in 1999, said the report.

Xue argued that he later replaced the funds by making deposits by September 2003, but prosecutors said taking the money broke the law.

As a state-owned enterprise officer, Xue had committed embezzlement since he diverted public funds for private use, prosecutors said.

Xue's trail continues.

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