October 15, 2015 / 10:44 AM / 2 years ago

China charges second former head of regional lender with graft

BEIJING, Oct 15 (Reuters) - A former head of a local lender in China’s northern region of Inner Mongolia will be prosecuted for suspected corruption, the state prosecutor said on Thursday, following in the footsteps of another former head of the same bank.

Yao Yongping, who was board chairman of the Bank of Inner Mongolia, is suspected of bribery, embezzlement and being unable to account for the source of a large number of his assets, the prosecutor said. It did not elaborate.

The prosecutor said last month that Yang Chenglin, another former board chairman of the same bank, would be prosecuted on the same charges.

An official who picked up the telephone after business hours in the bank’s duty office declined to comment. It was not possible to reach Yao for comment.

Bank of Inner Mongolia, based in regional capital Hohhot, was set up in 1999 and was renamed in 2009 from Hohhot City Commercial Bank. The bank now has 106 branches, including three in Shanghai and Beijing, according to its website.

Also in September, the ruling Communist Party’s anti-graft watchdog said it was investigating the head of the Bank of Dalian Co. Ltd, another small regional lender.

President Xi Jinping’s push to counter graft and extravagance has ensnared a series of senior bankers, with the 2013 investigation into the former vice president of Agricultural Bank of China Ltd being one of the most high-profile. (Reporting by Judy Hua and Ben Blanchard; Editing by Nick Macfie)

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