Former top leader of Chinese city of Guangzhou admits guilt

BEIJING: A former top official for China's prosperous southern city of Guangzhou wept in court as he confessed to taking $ 17 million in bribes, the court said Friday.

The Nanning Intermediate People's Court said in a written statement that Wan Qingliang raised no objection to the corruption charge and showed remorse when he stood trial.

The court will announce the verdict on a later date it didn't specify. It said Wan took the bribes from 15 companies and individuals from 2000 to 2014, when he served in various government positions in Guangdong.

Wan last served as the party chief for Guangzhou, one of the most prosperous cities in China. As the party chief, he ranked above the mayor and was the city's most senior official.

He came under investigation in 2014 amid a widening anti-corruption campaign launched by Chinese President Xi Jinping, who came into power in early 2013.

Xi has warned that widespread corruption threatens the Communist Party's rule over China.

Wan told the court in his final statement that he felt he had let down the party, the people and his family, the court said.