China’s prosecutor began on Monday formal legal proceedings against disgraced senior politician Sun Zhengcai, once considered a contender for top leadership, who has been accused of corruption and other crimes. Sun was abruptly removed from his post as party chief of the southwestern metropolis of Chongqing – one of China’s most important cities – in July and replaced by Chen Miner, who is close to President Xi Jinping. Later that month, he was put under investigation and in September, the party announced he would be prosecuted for corruption. Sun was accused of leaking secrets, bribery and abusing his power.
In a brief statement, the prosecutor said that it had begun proceedings against Sun for suspected bribery and had approved the taking of “coercive measures” against him, a Chinese legal term that generally refers to detention, Reuters reports. The case is proceeding, it added, without giving any other details.