SHANGHAI: A top Shanghai environment protection official went on trial Thursday for taking bribes, a local court said.
Yan Shunjun, 63, deputy head of Shanghai Municipal Environment Protection Bureau between 1997 to 2008, allegedly took bribes of 864,000 yuan (US$126,501), US$20,000 and 4,000 euros from seven contractors, the Shanghai Municipal No.2 Intermediate People's court heard.
Yan was also accused of illegally setting up a channel to speed up environmental impact assessment processes, which are essential for companies wanting to build factories.
Yan told the court: "I was afraid my life would not be as good when I retired as it was when I was working. I could not resist the temptation of the money.
Yan retired in 2008 and has cirrhosis of the liver. He was detained by police in April this year.
The court did not announce its verdict Thursday.