Swindling the Swindlers: Ripping Off Guangdong’s Corrupt OfficialsPosted: 06/5/2014 9:07 am
When Xi Jinping first launched what scholars have since called “the most ambitious anti-corruption campaign since Mao’s days”, few knew what the campaign would entail and mean for the broader society. But a few men in Guangdong saw it as an opportunity to make easy money because when anti-corruption drives kicks in, corrupt officials would likely do anything to save them from prison. And indeed they did.
This is probably why swindlers disguised themselves as officials from the provincial discipline inspection commission, a bureau tasked with anti-corruption campaign, and were able to successfully swindle several Guangdong officials with guilty consciences.
The fake anti-corruption officials would approach local cadres and notify them that they are currently under investigation. What follows is a friendly tip-off which goes something like, “By the way, if you transfer a certain amount of money to my account, the whole thing would disappear.” Then, the money rolled in.
The report by New Express Daily, however, did not disclose the number of officials who fell for the trick. A statement from the Guangdong anti-graft bureau would only say that the province has recently seen “quite a number” of such cases. We can only guess the number isn’t small. We have heard about swindlers disguised as officials targeting ordinary people, but cases of corrupt officials as victims are surely among the first we’ve heard.
Other stunts pulled by the swindlers include selling expensive book subscriptions to lower-tiered government departments in the name of the anti-graft commission, the report said.
The anti-graft bureau is encouraging cadres to report such cases to the bureau. But we are guessing some of the officials who had been swindled would have a hard time reporting the case—if reported to the bureau, an investigation would surely follow from the actual provincial discipline inspection commission.
Why else would an innocent official transfer the money unless they were guilty? If they don’t do anything upon getting the tip-off, then they have done nothing to stop their own downfall. Hmmm…it’s a tough call for these alleged “corrupt” officials.
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Photo: New Express Daily