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Analysts Expect Leniency, Opaque Handling for Bo Xilai

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Published on Aug 21, 2012

Official accounts of Gu Kailai's trial and verdict made no mention of her once-powerful husband, Bo Xilai. That has prompted some to speculate he may receive leniency in whatever action the Communist Party decides to bring against him.

Chinese journalist Gao Yu was named one of the International Press Institute's World Press Freedom Heroes of the 20th century. She says it's unclear what will happen to Bo, as the entire incident has been opaque.

[Gao Yu, Chinese Journalist]
"Everyone is still waiting to see exactly what will happen. It's hard to say, because everything is operated in a black box, there's no transparency. A major case like Gu's was finished in just 7 hours, and not even one witness was called."

And for Bo's case specifically, he is being investigated for "serious disciplinary violations." Which is an internal Party charge, oftentimes dealt with within the apparatus Communist Party.

NTD Senior China Analyst, Zhang Tianliang believes most of Bo's alleged crimes will be hidden from the public, as senior officials try to contain damage to the ruling regime.

[Zhang Tianliang, NTD Senior China Analyst]
"Bo Xilai is likely to be dealt with much more leniently than Gu Kailai. I think right now the Communist regime is afraid that Gu's case has already revealed too much, and has created too big an impact on the political situation. So they're taking this approach to dilute and separate it from Bo."

The current investigation into Bo Xilai is within the internal mechanisms of the Communist Party, and is separate to any legal proceedings that may be brought against him.

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