OFFICIALS found a stash of gold bars and $37 billion in cash in the basement of an allegedly corrupt Chinese mayor.
The former mayor of Haikou City, 58-year-old Zhang Qi, allegedly also has a portfolio of luxury properties – and will face the death penalty if he is found guilty of “economic crimes”.
Qi was being investigated by the National Supervisory Commission, who found 13.5 tons of gold worth millions of dollars. Video shows investigators sifting through the giant pile of gold bars, some of which spill out from shelving units onto the floor. Stacks of cash to the value of billions of dollars found at the home of the Community Party politician was in various currencies such as dollars, Chinese yuan and euros.
Zhang was the secretary of the Communist Party Committee of Haikou, the provincial capital city of Hainan with a population around nine million people. His position was equal to that of mayor, according to the ranking of Chinese Communist party officials. He was also a member of the Standing Committee of Hainan Province.
The disgraced former mayor has been stripped of both titles by the Commission for Discipline Inspection of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China. Meanwhile, China’s leader, Xi Jinping is cracking down on corruption as it’s a major policy for the Communist Party.
More than 10,000 people have been indicted for corruption since he took office in 2012.
According to reports, at least 120 corrupt bigwigs have been uncovered in similar investigations – including military officers and top execs.