CHENGDU, Nov. 15 (Xinhua) -- Wu Zhen, former deputy head of the now-defunct China food and drug administration, was sentenced to 16 years in jail after he was convicted of taking bribes and abuse of power Friday.
The ruling was handed down by the Intermediate People's Court of Chengdu, southwest China's Sichuan Province, in the first-instance open trial.
The court heard that between 1996 and 2018, Wu took advantage of his various positions to assist organizations and individuals in getting approval for drugs or finding employment. In return, he illegally accepted money and goods worth about 21.71 million yuan (about 3.1 million U.S. dollars) directly or through his relatives.
He also committed fraud in his work for personal gain and abused his power when he served as a senior official of the country's food and drug administration as well as the health authority, causing "huge losses" to the interests of the country and the people.
Wu was also given a fine to the tune of 1 million yuan and had his illegal properties confiscated, according to the verdict.
Wu received a lesser punishment as his attempts to take bribes worth 12 million yuan were unsuccessful and he confessed some of his criminal acts before investigators uncovered them, and expressed remorse and returned part of the bribes he had taken, said the court.