Senior Chinese Banking Official Investigated for Involvement in Loan Scandal

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After disappearing abruptly from the public gaze last week, Chinese media reports have finally revealed the reason for senior banking regulator Yang Jiacai’s absence from official duties.

Caixin Media reports that Yang Jiacai, assistant chairman of the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC), is under investigation for his alleged ties to loans scandal involving the Hubei branch of big-five lender Bank of Communications (BoCom).

According to Caixin’s sources the probe into Yang was launched on 9 April and is investigating his involvement with a loan scandal in the Hubei province capital of Wuhan which has already felled Yang Dongping, the former chief risk officer of BoCom.

In February the CCP’s disciplinary body announced that Yang Dongping had lost his party membership and been ousted from his official position for “abusing his power to do favour for some private businesspeople in loan issuance.”

Yang Jiacai and Yang Dongping are reportedly friends of long-standing who first became acquainted in the former’s native province of Hubei.

Yang Jiacai spent most of his career as an official in Hubei, serving as deputy head of the local branch of People’s Bank China during the period from 1997 to 2003.

Rumours about Yang’s ousting first emerged last week after China’s banking regulator offered conflicting reasons for his prolonged absence from official duties.

56 year-old Hubei-native Yang Jiacai is a three decade veteran of China’s regulatory sector, and for nearly the past four years has held the position of assistant chairperson with CBRC.

Yang was a familiar face within Chinese business news circles, as he was responsible for fielding inquiries from the press on trust and finance companies, and was on first name terms with many reporters.

Some of Yang’s closest family members are reportedly also under investigation, including his wife and son.

Yang Jiacai’s wife is alleged to have had a large sum of money in her bank account provided by unknown sources, while Yang’s son Yang Hao is a successful entrepreneur who heads a mobile app startup in Hubei that provides car wash services.

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