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Bo Xilai's Wife Charged With Murder

Gu Kailai, aide allegedly poisoned Neil Heywood
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 26, 2012 6:48 AM CDT
Bo Xilai's Wife Charged With Murder
In this January 17, 2007 photo, former Chongqing Communist Party Secretary Bo Xilai, right, accompanied by his wife Gu Kailai, attends a funeral for his father in Beijing.   (AP Photo/Kyodo News/China Foto Press)

(Newser) – The wife of ousted Chinese politician Bo Xilai and a family aide have been charged with the murder of a British businessman, the government said today. The official Xinhua News Agency reports that the prosecutor's indictment said Bo's wife, Gu Kailai, had a falling out with Brit Neil Heywood over money and worried that it would threaten her and their son's safety. Gu and the aide, Zhang Xiaojun, are alleged to have poisoned Heywood together, the report said. Heywood's death in November was attributed initially to a heart attack or excessive drinking.

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They were charged in the eastern city of Hefei, Xinhua said. It did not say when exactly the indictment was issued or when the crime occurred and why the case is being prosecuted in Hefei and not in Chongqing, the metropolis Bo ran as Communist party secretary and where the couple lived. The brief report is the first official news that the case against Gu is proceeding since the announcement three months ago that she and Zhang were being investigated and that Bo was being suspended from the powerful Politburo for unspecified discipline violations. (Read more Bo Xilai stories.)

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