Fallen Chinese political star to be tried Thursday

August 19, 2013 • World News

FILE – In this March 14, 2012 file photo, Bo Xilai, then Chongqing party secretary, attends the closing session of the annual National People’s Congress in the Great Hall of the People, in Beijing, China. Bo Xilai, a rising Communist Party star who fell from power last year, will go on trial Thursday on corruption charges, a court announced on Sunday, Aug. 18, 2013, putting China’s new leaders on course to wrap up a festering scandal as they try to cement their authority.(AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, File)

BEIJING (AP) — Disgraced Chinese politician Bo Xilai goes on trial Thursday on corruption charges in a case crafted to minimize damage to the Communist Party and avoid exposure of party infighting or human rights abuses.

Sunday’s announcement of a trial date for the former rising political star puts China’s new leaders on track to wrap up a festering scandal as they try to cement their authority.

The former party secretary of the major city of Chongqing fell from power last year in China’s messiest scandal in decades. It exposed the murder of a British businessman by Bo’s wife and a thwarted defection bid by his former police chief.

Bo will stand trial in the Intermediate People’s Court of the eastern city of Jinan on charges of taking bribes, embezzlement and abuse of power, said a one-sentence announcement on the court’s microblog account. The announcement was also carried by the official Xinhua News Agency.

Most trials in China last less than one day and Bo, 64, is almost certain to be convicted.

Bo’s downfall followed a failed defection attempt by his police chief at a U.S. consulate, which embarrassed Chinese leaders. The chief exposed a litany of complaints against Bo that gave political rivals ammunition to attack him.

Bo, the son of a revolutionary leader, was a member of the party’s 25-member Politburo. But he Login to read more

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