s former Interpol president Meng Hongwei has been kicked out of the Communist Party and formally charged with corruption, his wife and kids have been granted political asylum in France.
Meng was elected as the head of the international policing organization in 2016. He also served as a vice minister of public security in China, splitting his time between his home country and the French city of Lyon, where Interpol is headquartered.
Last year, his wife, Grace Meng, told French police that her husband had gone missing during a trip to China. At a later press conference, she said that the last text message she had received from him was the image of a knife. Soon, China announced that Meng was under investigation by the party’s anti-corruption watchdog and Interpol received a letter of resignation in his name.
In March, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection accused Meng of abusing his power to finance his family’s “extravagant lifestyle,” asserting that Meng had received huge bribes and used his influence to secure jobs for his wife allowing her to take advantage of these posts for private benefits. Last week, he was formally indicted.
Meanwhile, Grace Meng has claimed to have been the target of multiple abduction attempts, recalling how two Chinese businessmen had visited her at her home in October and invited her to travel with them by private jet to the Czech Republic and how the Chinese consulate in Lyon had told her that she had received a letter from her husband, but that she would have to come to the consulate in person to collect it. She also says that she has received a number of “strange phone calls” and was once followed into a hotel by a Chinese couple who tried to learn information about her.
Grace Meng filed a request for political asylum in January for herself and her 7-year-old twins. Her lawyer has informed the AFP that the request was granted on May 2nd.