X-Men actress and Chinese superstar Fan Bingbing has been missing since June. However, the Chinese government recently made an official announcement regarding the actress and the alleged tax evasion scandal she was involved. Following their statement, Binbing allegedly resurfaced on social media.
CNN reports the actress was fined by the communist Chinese government for tax evasion. According to China’s state-run news agency Xinhua, Bingbing reportedly has to pay $130 million to the government. The Chinese authorities indicate Fan owned $42 million in late taxes and fees, and was also fined $86 million. This comes after an explosive report earlier this year that linked the star and famous Chinese director Feng Xiaogang to a tax evasion scam.
The scam itself revolved around using multiple contracts regarding how much money Bingbing was making for her films. There would be two contracts drawn up, one with the lowered amount of payment for taxing purposes and the second with the real amount. She would use the contract with a much smaller sum to report to the government, while not reporting a much larger one. This would allow her to to avoid paying taxes on the larger payment contract.
Xinhua reports that the government won’t bring criminal charges against the actress because this is her first offense. However, she must pay all of the money by an undisclosed deadline.
According to CNN, Bingbing apologized to both the government and the public in a social media post:
“As a public figure, I should have abided by laws and regulations, and been a role model in the industry and society. I shouldn’t have lost self-restraint or become lax in managing (my companies), which led to the violation of laws, in the name of economic interests.”
CNN also reports that “Fan admitted to signing the contracts and said she “completely accepts” the decision by tax authorities.”
After admitting her guilt Fan would praise praise the Chinese communist party, “Without the favorable polices of the Communist Party and state, without the love of the people, there would have been no Fan Bingbing.“
It’s more than likely the Communist Party is using Fan Bingbing as an example to other celebrities who might think of skirting Chinese laws and not paying their fair share to the Communist Party. Bingbing was at the top of Forbe’s China Celebrity List in 2017 bringing in an estimated 300 million yuan. That translates to over $43 million.
While Bingbing allegedly posted on social media, there is still no official appearance of the actress. In fact, human rights advocate Michael Caster would tell CNN:
“That China feels so emboldened to disappear even one of its most famous actresses … should be a real wake up call that anyone within China could be next.”
I also have to note that while official Chinese statements accuse Fan of tax evasion, when she disappeared in June, China was in the middle of a crackdown on the entertainment and cultural spheres in the country. They forced bands to change their names. The Beijing Trade Association also promised to “purify” the city. There were also lists made that ranked Chinese celebrities on their moral conduct. Fan Bingbing was ranked last with zero points. The government also threatened to “ban stars who behave badly, including drug taking, gambling or visiting prostitutes.”
Do you think Fan Bingbing is safe in communist China? Do you believe the Chinese reports that she participated in a tax evasion scheme?