Former China Security Chief Sentenced to Life

(Screencap courtesy AP)

(Screencap courtesy AP)

The headline might not tell the entire story:

Zhou Yongkang, a former member of the ruling Communist Party’s all-powerful Politburo Standing Committee, is the biggest target to fall in Xi’s drive to end the longstanding culture of bribe taking and influence peddling among officials.

The First Intermediate People’s Court of Tianjin said Zhou was sentenced after being tried May 22 on charges of receiving bribes, abuse of power and leaking state secrets.

The trial was held behind closed doors because of the final charge.

Beijing used to just give a bullet to the back of the head for this kind of thing. Nevertheless, you have to wonder if Zhou’s trial was less about justice, and more about providing cover to the rising generation of equally corrupt officials.

And I’d wager the rent money that the “leaking state secrets” charge was trumped up specifically to force the trial behind closed doors.