Chinese court holds trial in absentia of embezzlement fugitive

(Xinhua)     Updated : 2021-12-10


ZHENGZHOU -- A court in Central China's Henan province tried Red Notice fugitive Cheng Sanchang in absentia on an embezzlement charge Thursday.

It was the first embezzlement case involving a fugitive defendant being tried in absentia.

Cheng, former chief of the Luohe municipal committee of the Communist Party of China and chairman of a state-owned company, was accused of taking advantage of his post to embezzle over 3.08 million yuan ($486,000) of public funds in late 2000.

Cheng fled abroad in February 2001 and was slapped with a Red Notice one year later by Interpol.

The Zhengzhou Intermediate People's Court had delivered the summons and a copy of the indictment to Cheng in compliance with the law, but Cheng did not appear in court. Cheng's close relatives hired lawyers for him.

At the trial, the prosecutors and Cheng's lawyers presented evidence, cross-examined it and gave their full accounts.

A lawyer read out the final statement of Cheng.

The trial was attended by 50 people, including legislators, political advisors, journalists and members of the public.

The sentence will be announced later.