Former chairman of Chinese insurance firm Anbang has been given 18 years in prison on charges of fraud and embezzlement, after his company was taken under government possession in February.
Wu Xiaohui asked for leniency despite initially denying charges against him. In late March he adopted a change of tone and publicly expressed his “deep self-reflection, understanding of and regret for the crimes and expressed deep remorse for his actions.”
As the Wall Street Journal reports, the 18-year term is a combination of a 15-year sentence for fraud and 10 years for abuse of power, referring to Wu’s attempts to conceal his illegal management practices. The Shanghai First Intermediate People’s Court also ordered RMB 10.5 billion of assets to be seized from Wu.
Anbang, which enjoyed rapid growth in recent years largely driven by aggressive borrowing and asset acquisition, received a $9.7 billion bailout package from the state insurance rainy-day fund, and will likely be under government control until it can find new private investors.