China Smacks Ex-Leaders Dumped in Village Revolt
Party officials fined, expelled for illegal land deals in Wukan
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 24, 2012 3:32 AM CDT
Protest leaders Lin Zuluan smiles after being elected as chief of Wukan village last month.   (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)
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(Newser) – China's Communist Party has punished officials whose corruption angered townspeople in southern China so much that they rebelled against the regimeand won. Two officials from Wukan have been expelled from the party for corruption and 18 others punished, according to state media. The expelled pair will have to return tens of thousands of dollars obtained through illegal land transfers and may also face criminal charges, the BBC reports.

After the people of Wukan drove its leaders out over illegal land grabs, party authorities granted some of their demands and allowed them to hold elections for new leaders, which the protest leaders won by a landslide. Some villagers, however, feel that the old leaders aren't being punished enough. "I feel that they're avoiding the heavier problems and picking on only the minor ones," one villager complained. "The amount of money these officials are accused for corruption is too low, considering that they've been around for decades."