The official, a deputy minister of state security who dealt with counter-intelligence regarding foreigners, particularly diplomats, businessmen and journalists is being investigated by the Chinese Communist Party's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, according to Reuters.
This indicates that China's anti-corruption campaign among senior officials initiated by President Xi Jinping has reached the top echelons of the party and state apparatus, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The official reason for the investigation on Ma is "serious violations of discipline," which generally means corruption, according to the Sydney Morning Herald. According to the Wall Street Journal, the investigation is part of a campaign to overhaul the Ministry of State Security, which has a budget higher than that of the military.
The trend of investigating sex scandals alongside corruption persisted, and Zhou Yongkang, once minister of public security and later a senior party official, was according to Xinhua declared guilty of "committ[ing] adultery with a number of women and trad[ing] his power for sex and money."
The campaign is an attempt to quell public discontent over corruption in China, according to the Wall Street Journal, and has become a definitive aspect of President Xi's rule.