Lottery scandal lands six officials in jail
Six government functionaries involved in a lottery scandal were detained on Tuesday in Shaanxi Province in Northwest China.
Among them were sports lottery directors Jia Anqing and Fan Hong, who were arrested on charges of malfeasance, said local police sources.
Jia, who was in charge of the Shaanxi Provincial Lottery Administration Centre, and Fang, who led the Xi'an municipal centre, were ordered to resign late last month.
Another four officials, including Zhang Yongmin, deputy director of Shaanxi Provincial Sports Lottery Administrative Centre, and public notary Dong Ping, were also detained, local police said.
"After a two-week-long careful investigation on the case, we have made it clear that some functionaries were negligent during sales of the March lottery selling," said Zhang Qijun, an official from Shaanxi Provincial Committee of the Communist Party of China.
Yang Yongming, a businessman hired to sell 60 million yuan (US$7 million) worth of sports lottery tickets attempted to embezzle the top prizes, four BMW325i cars, authorities said.
He was arrested in May along with five partners after the scam was exposed.
The subsequent investigation, however, found widespread problems with the city's lottery system.
As many as 100 people were involved in the case.
Zhang said his team will further look into the scandal to see whether lottery sales from previous years were also tainted.
Fifty people cheated out of a chance to win the top prize, a BMW car, will get their shot, Zhang said.