Song Jian’guo, a former traffic police officer in Beijing, is on trial for receiving 23.9 million yuan ($3.9 million) in bribes in exchange for issuing privileged car license plates to several business tycoons.
While Song ran the traffic administration bureau under the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau, he was in charge of car plate approvals.
Between 2004 and 2014, Song allegedly accepted bribes from several business people seeking plates with the letter “A,” which gave them privileges on the roads, prosecutors said.
A local insider said Song’s son might be in possession of some plate numbers with in-demand prefixes like Jing A or other lucky numbers. They sell for a bigger price. Jing is a shortened name for Beijing.
The press said a deputy director with the Beijing Vehicle Management Administration is also being investigated in the scandal.
The scam first came to light when someone by the name of Liu Xuemei won the license-plate lottery for seven straight months. Netizens discovered that Liu, who is in her 30s, is the deputy director of the vehicle management department in the Ministry of Public Security. She’s in charge of drafting rules and issuing vehicle licenses.
One of the bribe-givers named by prosecutors is real estate tycoon Guo Wengui, controller of Beijing Pangu Investment Co. and Beijing Zenith Holdings Ltd. Song was a regular visitor to Guo-controlled Pangu Plaza for lavish banquets, prosecutors said.
Others named as bribe givers in the case include Liu Changqing from Beijing Xinyue Lianhe Automobile Co Ltd, Zhai Yutang from Beijing Maqiao Shenlong Real Estate Development Co Ltd, and Zhang Sheng from Beijing Ranking Group.
Sources: China Daily, Beijing Youth Daily (中国青年报), Caixin (财新网), China Youth Daily (中国青年报)
Hui Zhi is the Senior Manager for Content with the China Compliance Digest, where a version of this post first appeared.