A Chinese court on Tuesday convicted Huang Guangyu, formerly China's richest man [Hurun report], of illegal business dealings, insider trading, and corporate bribery. Huang was previously the chairman of Pengrun Investments and founder of subsidiary GOME Electrical Appliances [corporate website], both publicly traded on the Shanghai and Hong Kong stock exchanges. The court sentenced Huang to 14 years in prison, fined him 600 million yuan (88.23 million USD), and ordered him to turn over valuable assets. Huang was charged [JURIST report] in February by the Supreme People's Procuratorate [official website, in Chinese], almost 15 months after he was initially placed under detention. His case has been the subject of intense media coverage in China involving allegations of bribery [Xinhua reports] to high-level Shanghai police among others.
Huang's conviction is part of a wider campaign in China to crack down on corruption, which is seen by many as a threat [CE report] to China's future stability. On Monday, an appeals court upheld the conviction [JURIST report] of three mining employees for stealing commercial secrets. In February, the president of the Supreme People's Court (SPC) [official website, in Chinese] called for increased efforts [JURIST report] to fight corruption among the judiciary. The president's statement came just two weeks after former SPC vice president Huang Songyou was convicted [JURIST report] on bribery and embezzlement charges. In January, the Communist Party of China [GlobalSecurity backgrounder] announced [JURIST report] increased oversight of the families of government officials to control corruption.