Documentary revealing former vice security minister’s bribery sparks discussion
Published: Jan 16, 2022 09:03 PM
Former vice minister of public security Sun Lijun Photo: A screenshot from China Central Televison

Former vice minister of public security Sun Lijun Photo: A screenshot from China Central Televison

A documentary that reveals details of Sun Lijun, former vice minister of public security, taking bribes from an interest group member who gave him "seafood boxes" with $300,000 hidden inside, sparked discussion among Chinese netizens after the show was broadcast on Saturday. 

The documentary, which is the first episode of an anti-graft TV series produced by China's discipline inspection authorities, showed how the senior official unscrupulously cultivated personal followers and engaged in corruption with his interest groups to achieve personal political gains. 

Sun, 53, charged with accepting a "huge amount" of bribes, market manipulation and illegal possession of guns, said in an interview unveiled in the episode that he took money in different forms to build up and consolidate his own power and that of his political gang, including taking "small seafood boxes" with $300,000 hidden in each one, from Wang Like, former vice governor of East China's Jiangsu Province. 

The amount of money Wang gave Sun in the "small seafood boxes" added up to more than 90 million yuan ($14 million). 

Besides the money from Wang, Sun also took huge amounts of cash, expensive watches, gold and silver jewelry, high-end mobile phones, tea, wine and other items from others, according to the documentary.

Topics relevant to the documentary had gained more than 100 million views on Chinese social media Weibo as of press time, where netizens were shocked by how Sun's powerful state was built by money, and they condemned the wrongdoings of the corrupt senior officials. 

Some netizens joked about the "small seafood boxes," saying that they should be the most high-end gift to be given out during the upcoming Spring Festival. 

It was not the first time that Sun became the center of discussion on social media. 

The former vice minister of public security was expelled from the Communist Party of China and removed from his post for grave violations of Party disciplines and laws in September 2021. 

An official statement reporting Sun's case said that Sun had never stayed true to the Party's ideals and faith, displayed "extremely inflated political ambition and very poor political integrity," made groundless criticisms of the Party's policies, and spread political rumors, the Xinhua News Agency reported in September.

Sun formulated a "15-year plan" for himself, aiming to reach a higher level every five years, according to the documentary. 

He said he had been reflecting on himself and never thought that he, as someone who worked in public security, would become a "destroyer of the rule of law or fairness and justice."

Global Times