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Corruption investigation into official begins

Fu Zhenghua, deputy director of the social and legal affairs committee of China's top political advisory body, is under investigation by the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, the country's top anti-graft body announced on Saturday.

The anti-corruption watchdog said Fu is suspected of serious violations of discipline and laws, but did not offer details for the reasons behind the probe as of publication.

Fu, 66, was deputy head of the Ministry of Public Security before serving as justice minister from March 2018 to April 2020. He later assumed his post at the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.

His last public appearance was in mid-September, when he toured Southwest China's Chongqing municipality. The senior security official had taken part in multiple high-profile investigations during his tenure at the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau, from cracking down on the sex trade to locking up corrupt officials.

Fu's investigation followed a Thursday announcement that his colleague Sun Lijun, former vice-minister of public security, had been expelled from the Communist Party of China and fired from his post for serious violations of discipline and laws.

Xinhua News Agency said in a statement that Sun had displayed "extremely inflated political ambition and very poor political integrity", and had used every means possible to serve his political objectives and his coterie, which seriously undermined the unity of the Party.

After Sun, Fu is the fourth vice-minister from the Ministry of Public Security to have fallen from grace in recent years. The other two are Meng Hongwei and Li Dongsheng. Meng was sentenced to 13-and-a-half years in prison for bribery last year, while Li was investigated in 2013 and later sentenced to 15 years for bribery in 2016.