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Corruption confessions in China surge ahead of party congress

State media tout 16,000 people turning themselves in as sign of Xi's authority

Chinese President Xi Jinping's anti-graft campaign seems to be changing tack.   © Kyodo

BEIJING -- The execution was as swift as it was unexpected. It also sent shock waves through China's bureaucracy and led to a flurry of self-initiated confessions of accepting bribes.

The speedy execution of Lai Xiaomin, former chairman of China Huarong Asset Management, in January after he was found guilty of accepting 1.79 billion yuan ($279 million) in bribes rattled bureaucrats for the breaking of an unwritten rule against carrying out death sentences for bribery or other financial crimes.

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