The Minister of Land and Resources, Xu Shaoshi, reported that more than 2,700 government officials face prosecution in 31,000 land-use violation cases.
Xu reported that 1.3 million hectares were used without authorization, about 20,000 hectares of land were taken over in the name of leases and 66,666 hectares were involved in the expansion of development zones. The courts have convicted more than 300 officials with fines and confiscating property worth 2 billion yuan ($276 million).
Land remains a steady source of fiscal revenue for local governments. To attract foreign investment, they offering investors cheap land. This practice has triggered outrage from the farmers, who are not properly compensated for the appropriated land.
Source: Website of The Ministry of Land and Resources, January 22, 2008