Gu Kailai, Wife of Fallen Chinese Official, Is Given Life Sentence

Neil-Heywood_Bo_Xi_2190379b HONG KONG — A Beijing court has commuted to life in prison the suspended death sentence given to Gu Kailai, the wife of one of China’s most prominent politicians, for the murder of a British business associate, according to the Chinese state-run news media. Xinhua, the state news agency, had posted documents Monday from the Beijing High People’s Court stating that the court was set to decide on the commutation, based on a recommendation from the prison where Ms. Gu was being held. Xinhua later updated its post with a document from the court, dated Friday, that commuted Ms. Gu’s sentence. Ms. Gu, the wife of the former commerce minister, Bo Xilai, was found guilty of murdering a family business associate, Neil Heywood, by poisoning him in a Chongqing hotel room in late 2011. She received a death sentence with a two-year reprieve when she was convicted in August 2012. Mr. Bo, who was removed from the ruling Politburo in the wake of the revelations, is serving a life sentence for taking bribes, embezzlement and abuse of power. Source