The Shangdong High People’s Court has rejected the appeal of Bo Xilai and upheld his life sentence for bribery, embezzlement and abuse of power, Xinhua news agency reported this morning.
Xinhua news agency posted on its official microblog that “On the morning of the 25th [October], the Shandong high court rejected the appeal and upheld the first instance life sentence verdict on Bo Xilai’s bribery, embezzlement and abuse of power case”.
The former Chongqing Communist Party leader was convicted of the charges in September and made his appeal earlier this month.
According to a live blog on SCMP, the court was scheduled to hear Bo’s appeal at 10 am, where only selected state-media journalists were allowed to attend the trial. Less than an hour later, at 10:44 am, reports officially announced the rejection of his appeal.
This was Bo’s only chance to appeal and the sentence is now final, according to BBC.
He could submit a complaint to the Supreme People’s Court in Beijing, but the vast majority of such complaints are rejected and do not result in another trial, reports the BBC’s Celia Hatton in Beijing.
Correspondents said few expected Bo’s conviction to be overturned. The courts are controlled by the ruling Communist Party, from which Bo was expelled from last year.
Read up on Shanghaiist’s coverage of the Bo Xilai trial here