Key players in the Gu Kailai murder case
Gu Kailai, wife of former Chinese Politburo member Bo Xilai, one of China's most influential politicians until he was stripped of his titles in March 2012, was given a suspended death sentence yesterday (August 20), after confessing to killing British businessman Neil Heywood by poisoning him with cyanide.
A suspended death sentence means that Gu is likely to face 14 years to life in jail, if she does not commit offences in the next two years.
Zhang Xiaojun, a family aide, was sentenced to nine years in prison for acting as an accomplice to the poisoning.
Factors such as economic interests and personal vendetta between a Chinese high-ranking officer and British businessman, distrust between political party members as well as the internal conflicts within the Communist Party leaders complicated the Gu Kailai murder case.
On April 10, Bo was suspended from the party's Central Committee and its Politburo, pending investigations for "serious disciplinary violations". He became the highest-ranking office holder to be stripped of his offices due to criminal murder, since the founding of modern China in1949.
The Gu Kailai murder case has since attracted worldwide media attention.
xinmsn takes a look at the key events and players in the Gu Kailai murder case.
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