Meng Hongwei
22 January 2020
Meng Hongwei, the former president of Interpol has been sentenced to 13 1/2 years in prison. He was the first Chinese national to head the international law enforcement agency. Before taking up of his Interpol role, he was China’s vice minister of public security for more than a decade. He was elected to the international law enforcement agency because of his track record of combatting corruption in China. He also served as Director of the Maritime Police Bureau and Deputy Director of China’s State Oceanic Administration from 2013 until 2017
At the time of his election to Interpol, Nicholas Bequelin of Amnesty International said that his position would enable China to more readily use Interpol as a means of pursuing dissidents abroad. China has in the past worked through Interpol to bring back people it wants to try. In 2014, Interpol issued red notices for some 100 Chinese corruption suspects who had fled overseas.
Within two years, after becoming the head of Interpol chief went missing in September 2018 after his trip to native China. Chinese authorities had detained him on corruption charges. Meng confessed that he had taken $2 million in bribes between 2005 and 2017. On the day of his arrival in China, he sent his wife Grace an emoji of a knife, suggesting that he was in danger. French newspaper Le Parisien said that he was under investigation in China, suspected of favouring a company in a cybersecurity procurement.
In October 2018, Meng was removed from the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, China’s top political advisory body and in March 2019, Meng was expelled from the Communist Party and removed from all posts.
Kim Jong Yang of South Korea, the agency’s senior vice president, took over Meng’s role immediately and was formally elected by its General Assembly one month later. The presidency of Interpol is a part-time, unpaid job tasked with overseeing the General Assembly of the agency which boasts a membership of 194 countries. It is the Secretary General who is responsible for implementing the decisions of the General Assembly and guiding the organization’s day-to-day affairs. Currently Jürgen Stock holds this full-time job.
Meng’s wife Grace is seeking asylum in France now.  NPR org reported.