Death Sentence For Corrupt Chinese Drug Official

China has sentenced a high ranking official to death on charges of corruption, reports the New York Times. Cao Wenzhuang is accused of accepting over $300,000 in bribes from pharmacutical companies in exchange for approving bogus drugs. Mr.Cao is the second Chinese offical to be sentenced to death for corruption in less than 2 months.

Despite the fact that China has gained interenational attention for exporting dangerous products, this move is thought to be aimed at Chinese consumers. From the New York Times:

But Chinese consumers are believed to be the primary victims of fake and substandard food and drugs, and the nation’s top regulators have been blamed with putting the public at risk by swapping cars, gifts and cash for granting licenses for drugs that in some cases have turned out to be deadly.

“This is a harsh but probably necessary strategy to re-establish control over an under-regulated sector,” said David Zweig, a professor at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.

Among Mr. Cao’s shady acts in his position with the agency—approving 14,000 drugs in 3 months with a staff of 12.

In other news, China has admitted that 1 in 5 of its products is substandard or tainted.

China reveals deep consumer product quality problems [International Herald Tribune]
China Sentences Official to Death for Corruption [New York Times]
(Photo: amyadoyzie)


Edit Your Comment

  1. banned says:

    Sounds fair to me, maybe thats how we should treat all corrupt government officials.

  2. dbeahn says:

    “OK UNITED STATES that no happen again. We put him dead! He just one person, but do all those bad things! You buy lots of stuff now!”

  3. Namilia says:

    1 word:


    Ok, so you killed one and stopped the corruption he did. thats fine. good for you. but removing one scapegoat isnt gonna fix a thing.

  4. esqdork says:

    @dbeahn: Pidgin English, that is real class.

  5. miborovsky says:

    The world would be a much, much better place if we line all CPC members up, and then shoot them.

    Every one of them is a corrupt opportunist with no moral decency.

  6. wwwhitney says:

    Why do these sorts of posts always bring the racists out the woodwork?

    That having been said, China’s attempts to solve their corruption problem through executions is disturbing.

  7. beyond says:

    Is it really over the top? Their greed allowed Chinese consumers to unknowingly take drugs that killed them. I think the sentence is right on target.

  8. forever_knight says:

    @esqdork: the correct option is obviously ebonics. duh!

  9. goodkitty says:

    $300k in bribes? Sounds like he’s been taking lessons from U.S. politicians. I wonder when we’ll start getting this tough on our own elected officials who accept tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes for equally pervasive and disturbing ‘favors’? That said, China certainly has a lot of executions (to put it mildly) left to go if they want to eliminate corruption there… oh who am I kidding, they don’t. Scapegoat!

  10. racermd says:

    Okay – so lots of commenters got in a tizzy over not handing in the name of a Geek Squad employee doing something unethical. Now we have the reverse where it’s not good enough to punish one of the bad seeds as an example to the rest.

    Can you people make up your mind, already?

  11. Trai_Dep says:

    We can’t even manage to imprison a dude convicted of crimes related to revealing the top-secret identity of a covert nuclear arms agent. If Republicans can manage to piss in the face of national security so blatently and effectively, I highly doubt we’d be able to manage to execute our corrupt (hey: appointed by… Republicans!!) top government bureaucrats.

    It doesn’t mean we should stop trying, however.

  12. nakmario says:

    why dont they issue a similar punishment to those in the drug companies that bribed the official?
    They know far more the dangers of their product than the official who surely was paid to turn a blind eye to the product but may not have been aware of the dangers of such product.

  13. ShadowFalls says:

    The United States imports almost everything from China, how about they import the same types of things to be used against its own corrupt politicians?

  14. l951b951 says:

    @ Shadowfalls
    Not to turn this into a political thread, but as evidenced by the Scooter Libby sentence commutation, our politicians and the people that work for them are above the law.

  15. superbmtsub says:


    Death is ALMOST never the right answer to right a wrong. Look at China. A messed up nation going at extremes to solve problems.

    The world needs to boycott that insane nation.