Two journalists from the Guangzhou-based Nanfang Media Group have confessed that they took huge amounts of money in bribes, according to statements from prosecutors in Shaoguan, Guangdong Province.
However, posts on several social media sites claimed that the two journalists, Liu Wei'an and Hu Yazhu, had been arrested in Shaoguan due to possible revenge from local authorities, because they had written reports exposing the existence of problems in the government and judicial authorities.
On Saturday, the Shaoguan People's Procuratorate published a statement on its website saying that Liu and Hu were suspected of being involved in the bribery cases of Wei Zhenshun and Zhang Yunfeng. The prosecutor's office did not give details of the case involving the latter two suspects, although Wei is involved in a land-use bribery case, according to the People's Daily Online.
Liu is from the website southcn.com and Hu works at the Nanfang Daily. Both have written stories on a land-use dispute case and illegal exploitation of rare earth minerals in Shaoguan, the report said.
City prosecutors assigned the investigation to Qujiang district prosecutors, which started looking into Liu on May 22. Liu confessed to bribe-taking, and was arrested on June 5, while Hu was caught in provincial capital Guangzhou on Friday, according to Saturday's statement. On Sunday, the city prosecutors said in a another statement that Hu confessed to his illegal behavior with Liu, and district procurators released him on bail.