Slain Brit's Mom to China: Show Us 'Compassion'

Neil Heywood at center of Bo Xilai scandal
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 12, 2013 10:04 AM CDT
Slain Brit's Mom to China: Show Us 'Compassion'
In this March 13, 2012 photo, then Chongqing Communist Party Secretary Bo Xilai attends the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference held at Beijing's Great Hall of the People in China.   (AP Photo/Alexander F. Yuan)

The mother of the British businessman murdered in China's biggest political scandal in decades has kept quiet about the matter—but now, she says, it's time to speak up. Ann Heywood is calling on China to show "decisiveness and compassion" to "mitigate the consequences of a terrible crime" on her family, including the slain Neil Heywood's two children. His murder led to the conviction of Gu Kailai, wife of disgraced former official Bo Xilai. Bo's corruption trial is expected to begin this month, though no official date has been provided, the Wall Street Journal notes.

"I have been surprised and disappointed that, despite repeated discreet approaches to the Chinese authorities, there has been no substantive or practical response," she says. "I hope and trust that the leaders of this great nation, which Neil loved and respected, will ... enable my family finally to achieve some kind of closure to our ongoing nightmare." The Bo or Gu families would likely be responsible for compensation to the Heywood family, but Beijing would need to approve the move, the Journal notes. (Read more Bo Xilai stories.)

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