Former Chinese leader gets life in prison for corruption

China

Ex-leader gets life in prison for corruption

A Chinese court today convicted fallen politician Bo Xilai of corruption and sentenced him to life in prison in one of the country's most lurid political scandals in decades. The Jinan Intermediate People's Court announced the verdict against Bo, who was tried last month on charges of taking bribes, embezzlement and abuse of power. The former Politburo member and party chief of the megacity Chongqing vigorously denied any criminal wrongdoings during the trial, but Chinese courts are not independent and a guilty verdict was widely expected. Bo's downfall was set in motion by his wife's murder of a British businessman, followed by a defection of his top aide to a U.S. Consulate with information about the murder case just ahead of a leadership transition. Bo, once a rising star, had been removed from office and expelled from the party.

Hampton, N.H.

Car hits cyclists at event, killing two

A car slammed into a group of bicyclists Saturday during an annual ride along the New England coastline, killing two riders and injuring two others, police said. The crash happened on a two-lane bridge in Hampton about 8:30 a.m., just after the start of the 40th annual Granite State Wheelmen Tri-State Seacoast Century ride. Police said two Massachusetts women were killed. They were identified as Pamela Wells, 60, of South Hamilton, and Elise Bouchard, 52, of Danvers. Two other riders suffered nonlife threatening injuries, police said. Investigators said a 20-year-old motorist crossed lanes, hitting the riders. Authorities haven't said whether the driver will be charged.

Taiwan

Typhoon moves toward Hong Kong

The most powerful typhoon of the year swept through the Luzon Strait separating the Philippines and Taiwan on Saturday, battering island communities with heavy rains and strong winds as it headed straight for Hong Kong. Typhoon Usagi weakened from a supertyphoon — those with sustained winds of at least 150 miles per hour — and veered westward during the day, likely sparing southern Taiwan from the most destructive winds near its eye. Two people were killed in the Philippines, and two others were missing.

Elsewhere

South Korea: North Korea on Saturday indefinitely postponed reunions of families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War scheduled to start Wednesday, an apparent setback after weeks of improving ties following springtime threats of war.

Israel: A Palestinian man lured an Israeli soldier he worked with outside Tel Aviv to the West Bank on Friday, and killed him in hopes of using the body as leverage to gain the release of his brother from prison, military officials said Saturday.

Peru: Pope Francis has removed a Roman Catholic bishop in Peru who an influential former prelate says is suspected of sexually abusing minors.

Times wires

Former Chinese leader gets life in prison for corruption 09/21/13 [Last modified: Saturday, September 21, 2013 11:17pm]

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