The Chinese Connection... May 9, 2005 22:43:21 GMT -6
Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on May 9, 2005 22:43:21 GMT -6
Top Chinese Rocket Designer Held On Charges Of Bribery, Embezzlement
Beijing (AFP) April 15, 2005
Li Jianzhong, one of China's former top rocket designers, has been arrested on charges of bribery and embezzlement, state media reported Friday.
Li, president from 1994 to 2000 of the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology (CALT), is alleged to have taken more than 1.6 million yuan (194,000 US dollars) and 20,000 US dollars in bribes.
He also allegedly embezzled 155 million yuan (18.76 million US dollars), Xinhua news agency reported.
Li was renowned as the development organizer for China's Long March series of rockets, which have sent various satellites and the Shenzhou V aircraft, China's first manned spaceship, into orbit.
An official at CALT confirmed that Li has been arrested on charges of bribery, said the Beijing News, but declined to comment further.
A probe of Li was started shortly after the successful blast-off of Shenzhou V in October 2003 after police were tipped off, Xinhua said.
The informants alleged that Li took bribes when he served as the president of CALT and chairman of a listed company specializing in rocketry.
A vice president of CALT, who was not named, told Xinhua that no one else involved in Li's case were technicians or members of the development team of Long March 2F, the launch vehicle of Shenzhou V.
"So the allegations are groundless that the quality of Shenzhou V had been somewhat affected," he was quoted as saying.
He said Li's case would not erode "the courageous, collective spirit of the Shenzhou VI team". Shenzhou VI is China's next manned space craft which is expected to be launched later this year.
That's a kin to finding out Von Braun was dipping into the NASA fund!
Boy, corruption knows no boundries...