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Operation Fox Hunt: China chases missing mandarins

Chinese authorities have taken a series of measures recently to hunt corrupt officials who have fled overseas with their illicit assets.

China’s Public Security Ministry announced a six-month campaign dubbed “Fox Hunt 2014” in a bid to catch fugitives suspected of economic crimes. The ministry required local police to develop detailed hunting plans, deepen international cooperation and mobilize the public to blow the whistle against fugitives.

Meanwhile, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) has established a new branch, known as the International Cooperation Bureau, in a bid to go after corrupt officials who have fled overseas. The Bureau was created by a merger of the former foreign affairs office and the corruption prevention office.

Since 2008, 730 fugitives charged with economic crimes have been brought back to China, People’s Daily said, but the total number of fugitives and the amount of illicit money they took remain unknown.

Asia, Africa and North America are popular. China has extradition treaties with 37 countries, but not with the U.S., Canada and most European countries.

Authorities have also intensified the crackdown on “naked officials,” whose spouses or children have migrated overseas. The naked officials are more likely to engage in corruption and flee overseas, the government has said.

The Guangdong provincial government recently identified 2,190 “naked officials” and sacked more than 850 from their posts.

Sources: China News (中国新闻网), People’s Daily (人民日报), Telegraph, Reuters

Hui Zhi is the Senior Manager for Content with the China Compliance Digest, where a version of this post first appeared.

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