[JURIST] Former vice president of China's Supreme People's Court (SPC) [official website, in Chinese] Huang Songyou was convicted on bribery and embezzlement charges on Tuesday and sentenced to life imprisonment [Xinhua report]. Huang is the highest-ranking judge to be charged with corruption [China Daily report] since the founding of the People's Republic of China. Between 2005 and 2008, Huang allegedly embezzled 3.9 million yuan (about $574,000 USD) while serving as vice president of the SPC, and he allegedly embezzled 1.2 million yuan (about $175,000 USD) while serving as president of the Intermediate People's Court of Zhanjiang in 1997.
In August, the Communist Party of China (CPC) revoked [JURIST report] Huang's membership, following the corruption investigation. Huang was removed [JURIST report] from his position as vice president of the SPC in October 2008 by a vote of the legislators. In March, the SPC pledged to take steps to eliminate judicial corruption [JURIST report] with improved ethics education.