Suspect in Bank Fraud Case Surrenders in China


A prime suspect in a major bank fraud case has turned himself in to police after spending years hiding out in Canada, China's Ministry of Public Security said.

Li Dongzhe was found to have been the mastermind of bank fraud involving "a huge amount of money" from 2000 to 2004 and he worked with several accomplices, the ministry said.

He fled to Vancouver, Canada, in December 2004 before his crimes came to light in 2005, it said.

Li has returned to China and turned himself over to police "recently," Xinhua news agency cited the ministry as saying.

Earlier media reports said Li, then a businessman, and the other prime suspect, Gao Shan, the former head of a branch of the Bank of China in Heilongjiang Province, allegedly siphoned 1 billion yuan (US$158 million) from customers' accounts, according to Xinhua.

Northeast Expressway, a Shanghai-listed company, said on January 4, 2005, that more than 293 million yuan had disappeared from the company's account at the BOC branch, according to Chinese media. Other customers also said 700 million yuan were missing from their BOC accounts.

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