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Fugitive database to ease information sharing

Updated: 2015-03-31 07:49
By ZHANG YAN (China Daily)

Using a shared computer database, provinces and autonomous regions will share new clues about corrupt officials who have fled overseas with the top anti-graft watchdog within 24 hours, the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection said on Monday.

According to the CCDI, the database, which is accessible by both central authorities and local governments, was set up to record detailed information about fugitives suspected of graft.

"Our main task is to collect the escaped corrupt officials' individual information and build solid evidence at home, rather than flying abroad to collect evidence," a senior official at the CCDI said, asking that his name not be used.

Local provinces and regions have been playing an essential role in providing clues about corrupt officials who have escaped abroad. Records can be updated in a timely manner and supplementary evidence can be provided to the CCDI to assist in its manhunts.

In recent years, a large number of corrupt Chinese officials have fled to popular destinations, including the US, Canada and Australia, to avoid apprehension. They have transferred tens of millions yuan out of the country through money laundering and underground banks, the authorities said.

Early last year, more than 150 corrupt officials were at large in the US alone, and some of them had obtained permanent residence permits.

In April, Chinese judicial authorities will initiate a campaign dubbed "Skynet", which will target corrupt officials on the run overseas.

The Ministry of Public Security will work closely with the People's Bank of China to monitor the suspicious flow of money remitted to foreign accounts and will enhance actions against offshore companies and underground banks that enable the transfer of funds abroad.

Judicial authorities will also conduct thorough investigations into the passports of governmental officials. The police will focus on investigation of officers who illegally processed private passports, and those who approved such passports will also be held accountable, according to the CCDI.

Last week, 126 law enforcement officers from local governments and authorities participated in a four-day training program held by the CCDI. During the training, law professors and senior officials from the central judicial authorities gave lectures about the differences between the laws of China and other foreign countries, as well as addressing some technical issues in the finance sector.

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