SHANGHAI — China is investigating a senior economic policymaker for alleged "serious disciplinary violations" — the highest-ranking central government official to be targeted in the new Chinese president's anti-corruption crackdown.
The investigation of Liu Tienan, a deputy director of the powerful National Development and Reform Commission, was reported Sunday by the Communist Party's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, according to China's official news agency.
Although the commission provided no details, the terse statement came five months after accusations were made by a prominent Chinese investigative journalist that Liu had misrepresented his academic credentials and colluded with a private business for personal gain. The accusations were spelled out online by Luo Changping, deputy editor-in-chief of Caijing, a highly regarded financial magazine.
In addition to his post at the economic-planning ministry, which he has held since 2008, Liu was chief of the National Energy Administration and earlier had leadership roles in revitalizing China's industrial northeast region.
Liu, 58, is the latest in a string of government officials ensnared by President Xi Jinping's campaign to clean up Beijing's corruption-tainted image. Warning that corruption was threatening the survival of the Communist Party, Xi has waged a highly public crusade to fight graft and lavish spending by government officials.
Analysts say the number of corruption cases sent for prosecution has increased this year. Last month China charged former Railways Minister Liu Zhijun with corruption and abuse of power, although his case was launched before Xi assumed the party leadership in November.
In Liu Tienan's case, the allegations of misconduct were posted on a microblog by Luo. The veteran journalist accused Liu of transferring large sums of ill-gotten money to his son's bank account. He also alleged that Liu had never earned a master's degree and that he had kept a mistress whom he later threatened to kill after relations turned sour.
A spokesman for Liu in the past has called the accusations groundless.