A recently demoted advisor to Chinese President Hu Jintao has been connected to a Ferrari crash earlier this year that left one dead and two injured in Beijing, The New York Times reported, citing several “well-connected” party officials. The crash reportedly killed the son of Ling Jihua, a close ally to the departing president, and seriously injured two women who were with him in the luxury vehicle, all in states of undress. Ling, 55, who headed the General Office of the party’s Central Committee, was officially replaced last week by an official with ties to presumed incoming president Xi Jinping. Ling has been shifted to head of the United Front Work Department, a less prestigious post. The demotion could be political jockeying by Xi as Hu likely seeks to maintain his influence after the leadership transition. The car crash may have helped lead to Ling’s demotion, similar to how “family management” issues contributed to the ouster of Politburo member Bo Xilai.
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