BEIJING: A Chinese forensic expert who questioned the murder conviction of top politician Bo Xilai’s wife has resigned one of her positions, state media said yesterday, just as Bo’s trial date was announced.
Wang Xuemei -- who openly doubted the ruling Communist authorities’ account of the death of British businessman Neil Heywood -- stepped down as vice-president of the Chinese Forensic Medicine Association, the Global Times said.
The reason for Wang’s timing was unclear. In a video posted online over the weekend she cited her disagreement with a separate, unrelated case for her decision.
The announcement by Wang, who is also a vice-director at the public prosecutor’s office, came as state media said that Bo -- once head of the southwestern megacity of Chongqing and one of the country’s top 25 leaders -- would face trial for corruption on Thursday.
A guilty verdict is all but certain at the proceedings in the eastern city of Jinan.
The intermediate court there opened an account on China’s Twitter-like Sina Weibo service on Sunday announcing the date of the trial. Posts on the site were being moderated and would-be users received a message that: “Comment is posted successfully, but updating the server may be delayed, please wait for 1-2 minutes. Thank you!”
Virtually all of those posts that appeared upheld the official line, such as: “The Communist Party is great” and “Make every effort to fight corruption!”. Bo’s wife Gu Kailai was given a suspended death sentence in August 2012 for fatally poisoning Heywood.