According to Li Yuanhua, a former professor at the Capital Normal University, fake ID cards were so common among Chinese officials that they have long been a “must-have” for those in high-ranking positions.
He said the primary purpose of the fake ID cards is for laundering corrupted money and planning escape routes.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) recently took down two high-ranking officials surnamed Wang for corruption charges. Both were found to have prepared fake identity cards.
The first official is Wang Fuyu, who spent two decades serving as a member of the provincial standing committee, deputy secretary of the provincial party committee, and chairman of the provincial CPPCC in Hainan Province and Guizhou Province before retiring in 2018.
He was sentenced to death on January 17th for accepting huge amounts of bribes. He was stripped of all political titles, had all his property seized, and must also pay $160,000 in penalties. His death sentence would be carried out in two years.
The court alleged that Wang Fuyu used the convenience of his position to accept bribes amounting to $68.45 million between 1995 and 2021 and used his influence to take $2.74 million from 2019 to 2020 after his retirement.
In the process of accepting bribes, Wang Fuyu applied for fake ID cards for his brother and himself under false names and then used the fraudulent identity to open multiple bank accounts and deposit hundreds of millions of dollars in bribes.
The other official is Wang Like, a former secretary of the Jiangsu Provincial Political and Legal Committee. Last December, the CCP said he was charged after turning himself into the authorities.
He was charged with four counts of accepting bribes, offering bribes, harboring and condoning a triad organization, and forging identity documents.
Epoch Times noted that numerous high-ranking Chinese officials have fallen from grace, but only a few have been convicted of “forging identity documents.” The recently convicted officials held top positions in the CCP, highlighting their case.
Wang Like, for example, was born in 1964, joined the police aged 16, and became part of the force at 18. He served as deputy director of the Liaoning Provincial Public Security Bureau, later deputy mayor of Dalian City, and then director of the city’s Public Security Bureau. He also rose to be a member of the Standing Committee of the Jiangsu Provincial Party Committee, then secretary of the Provincial Party Committee’s Political and Legal Committee, and director of the Provincial Public Security Bureau.
Counterfeit identity cards are commonly sold on the streets in China. But Wang Taiyuan, a professor at the Department of Public Security of China’s Public Security University, said they could easily be exposed through system screening.
Wang said those used by Chinese officials are distinctively different in this regard.
Many Chinese officials have successfully used these falsified cards for escaping arrest at border checks.
Yang Xiuzhu, former deputy director of Zhejiang Provincial Construction Department and former deputy mayor of Wenzhou city, was suspected of embezzling $40 million.
While taking bribes, she also prepared fake identification documents to flee China for herself and her family. She also used her counterfeit IDs to apply for real passports.
Hu Changqing, former deputy governor of Jiangxi province, used a fake ID with a completely unfamiliar name, “Chen Fengqi,” to leave China in August 1999.
Eight months later, Hu was sentenced to death for taking and giving bribes. His case marks the highest-ranking official who has been sentenced to death after the CCP made the ruling.
But facilitating corruption and fugitive preparation are not the only reasons Chinese officials seek different identities.
Zhao Haibin, a member of the Party Committee of the Public Security Bureau of Lufeng City, Guangdong, is alleged to have used his fake ID card under the name “Zhao Yong” to run a business with 170 properties.
The Lufeng Disciplinary Inspection Commission of Guangdong announced it had investigated Zhao Haibin. However, the investigation’s result remains unknown, although seven years have passed.
Huang Dong, former principal and party secretary of Zhaoqing Agricultural School, Guangdong, used fake identification documents to register three marriages with the CCP’s civil affairs department. He was sentenced to 18 years in prison for taking bribes in September 2004.