Zhou Benshun is one of Hebei's top officials who were jailed for corruption. (Photo : Getty Images)
To be able to control the alarming smog levels in Hebei Province, the local government said that they will learn from the lessons from the arrest of Yang Chongyong, a top official who was charged with grave disciplinary actions.
Yang Chongyong was the chairman of the provincial Party Congress and former vice-governor of Hebei. Details of his arrest were not released.
The arrest was called an "alarm bell" for Party cadres to maintain discipline and follow the leadership of the central committee. The current provincial party chief, Zhao Kezhi, said that they will support President Xi's anti-corruption campaign.
The local government has been criticized for poor implementation of anti-pollution codes and central government codes on overcapacity.
Zhao's predecessor, Zhou Benshun, was dismissed and jailed for 15 years. He received more than 40 million yuan in bribes. He was the party chief of Hebei for two years before being arrested.
Zhao Benshun was found to have abused his power and took bribes from 2000 to 2015. He would help companies secure real estate projects in exchange for payoffs.
He used to be part of the Hunan Province's central committee and the Party's Central Political and Legal Affairs Commission as Zhou Yongkang's secretary for five years.
The former Hebei Province boss used to own a house with 16 rooms which spanned 800 square meters. He employed two domestic helpers and two chefs.
He was also slammed for being superstitious and for owning religious scrolls, which were buried right after his arrest.
Zhou and other corrupt officials were arrested, including Sichuan Province Deputy Party head Li Chuncheng and Jiang Jiemin. Both Party bosses held important positions in heading China's state-owned companies.
A military official who is linked to Zhou Benshun is Wang Jianping, who was the first military official charged with corruption under President Xi's leadership.