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Corrupt China officials stole £74bn

Thousands of corrupt Chinese officials have stolen more than £74 billion and fled overseas since the mid-1990s, the central bank has said.

Between 16,000 to 18,000 government officials and executives at state-owned enterprises smuggled about 800 billion yuan out of China between the mid-90s and 2008.

The People's Bank of China study says the officials smuggled money into the US, Australia, Canada and Holland, using offshore bank accounts or investments such as property or collectibles.

The report says the officials masked the thefts as business transactions by setting up private companies to receive the money transfers.

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