Fan Bingbing lands $95m fine for evading taxes

And a timeline of events since the star landed herself in hot soup

Fan Bingbing lands $95m fine for evading taxes
Fan Bingbing lands $95m fine for evading taxes
03 Oct 2018

Fan Bingbing lands $95m fine for evading taxes

The veil of mystery over what’s up with Fan Bingbing has finally been lifted as the Jiangsu provincial tax bureau announced that it has delivered judgement to the actress over her tax evasion scandal.

The actress was missing-in-action for more than three months after it was reported that she was placed under house arrest and investigated for her ‘yin-yang’ contracts.

In an official statement, the Jiangsu provincial tax bureau shared that the Chinese actress has been ordered to pay back RMB 255 million (S$51 million) in overdue taxes and will be fined RMB 479 million (S$95.84 million) for evading the said taxes.

Following the release of the reports, Bingbing uploaded an official statement on her Weibo shortly after noon (GMT +8), apologising for her misdeeds.

The apology read, “During this period of time, I experienced pain and tribulation that I’ve never gone through before. I’ve also gone through deep reflection and I feel deeply ashamed and regretful about what I’ve done. I want to sincerely apologise to everyone.”

“For a long time, I did not balance the interests of the country, society and myself well, and I used yin-yang contracts for the movie Air Strike, and I’m ashamed of it. When I was cooperating with the taxation bureau in investigations into my company, I continually reflected on myself. As a public figure, I should adhere to the laws and be a good example to society. I should not have lost my sense of self-discipline and should have done everything by the book. For this, I would like to sincerely apologise to the society, the friends who love me, the public and to the country’s taxation agency.”

“After being investigated, I fully accept all judgments made by the tax agency and pay all fines and take all the punishments that have been decided. From a young age, I’ve loved the arts and I was able to enter showbiz at a good time. With the help of my seniors and the audiences who love me, along with my continuous hard work, I made some headway in showbiz. As an actress, I was proud of being able to present myself on the world stage and strived to work even harder to achieve good results. Every achievement that I accomplished was because of the country and its citizens’ support. Without the policies put in place by the country and without the love of the public, there would be no Fan Bingbing.”

“Today, I am deeply unsettled because of my mistakes! I’ve let down the country who nurtured me, let down the trust that society gave me, and let down the love that fans have shown to me. For this, I apologise to everyone once again! Please forgive me!”

“I believe that after this lesson, I will adhere to the rules, maintain order, be responsible, and show a good performance to everyone. I will also ensure that my company is managed well, is trustable and cultured in order to give positive energy to society.”

“Once again, I sincerely apologise to the society, the fans who have always supported me and to the the friends and family who love me.”

Read on for a timeline of Fan Bingbing’s tax evasion scandal.

Photos: PBE Media, Fan Bingbing/Weibo, Fan Bingbing/Facebook

May 29
May 29
03 Oct 2018

May 29

Bingbing was allegedly accused by Chinese host Cui Yong Yuan of signing a yin-yang contract, and by doing so intentionally evaded high taxes. Bingbing’s agency quickly refuted the allegations in a statement, adding that it is against the law to release confidential contract details to the public, and said that they would sue the host for the defamatory statements he made against the actress.

June 4
June 4
03 Oct 2018

June 4

The former CCTV host shared at a media interview that Bingbing had called him about his claims following the social media uproar, and alleged that she was currently being investigated because of what he said.

At the time, media reports stated that he had also met tax officials to share what he knew, and that investigations were said to be underway.

June 6
June 6
03 Oct 2018

June 6

Bingbing returned to Beijing, where she refused media interviews about her alleged scandal. Chinese media reports claimed that she blamed Chinese director Feng Xiaogang for not resolving a dispute with Yong Yuan, which is said to have led to the host’s social media post. Rumours of her giving her scheduled events a miss also started to emerge.

July 1
July 1
03 Oct 2018

July 1

Bingbing made a public visit to a children’s hospital, which would also be the last sighting of her till date.

July 23
July 23
03 Oct 2018

July 23

This was the last time that Bingbing was seen active on social media as she ‘liked’ a few posts on the platform. Following which, there was a radio silence from her until October 3.

July 28
July 28
03 Oct 2018

July 28

Reports of Bingbing and her younger brother, Chengcheng, being placed under residential surveillance emerged, with additional reports sharing that even their staff members were under watch. Movements to and fro from their respective residences were also said to be restricted.

July 31
July 31
03 Oct 2018

July 31

Bingbing’s manager, Mu Xiaoguang, along with an unnamed financial advisor were reported to have been arrested by the police under suspicions that they destroyed evidence that was pertinent to an ongoing investigation.

August 7
August 7
03 Oct 2018

August 7

Claims that Bingbing, who had not been spotted in public after returning to Beijing, was under house arrest emerged. A source claimed that she was staying in a “special accommodation”, with rumours about the government’s intentions to clean up the entertainment industry circulating. The speculation further claimed that an attractive, popular and highly paid celebrity had been targeted.

August 16
August 16
03 Oct 2018

August 16

The monthly round up of Chinese celebrities with the highest-ranked net worth for July was released, with Bingbing’s standing plummeting six places and out of the top 10. Rumours that she was banned from acting for three years, along with her sudden disappearance, had many wondering what would become of the actress.

August 22
August 22
03 Oct 2018

August 22

A source claiming to be close to Bingbing’s fiancé, Li Chen, shared that the actor had confirmed that “Bingbing has something to do recently” and that the public need not worry about the actress.

Till date, this statement has yet to be verified, but if true, it would be the first public statement that Li Chen had made since Bingbing’s scandal erupted.

August 27
August 27
03 Oct 2018

August 27

Chinese actress Shao Xiaoshan claimed that Bingbing was in America, and that she had broken up with Li Chen. These speculations, however, were met with much scepticism from netizens as there was no proof to back it up.

The two actresses were once friends, but are said to have fallen out with each other prior to the scandal. Bingbing previously introduced Xiaoshan to Chinese director Feng Xiaogang, who then hired her as Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi’s body double in the movie, The Banquet.

August 28
August 28
03 Oct 2018

August 28

Li Chen’s missing ring on his finger, which he is said to have kept on to mark his relationship with Bingbing, added fuel to the breakup rumours that Xiaoshan had started earlier in the week.

At the same time, however, there was speculation that Bingbing and Li Chen had registered their marriage when they were in the USA, and would also do so shortly in China.

August 30
August 30
03 Oct 2018

August 30

Reports of Fan Bingbing stepping back out into the public eye emerged, as Chinese media outlets claimed that investigations about her alleged tax evasion had concluded and that the authorities, along with Bingbing, would hold address the media about the entire issue.

September 1
September 1
03 Oct 2018

September 1

A netizen claimed to have sighted Bingbing at the Los Angeles International Airport applying for asylum at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection office. She was said to have fled the country to seek refuge, joining her fiancé Li Chen.

Chinese media claimed that Jackie Chan had advised her to do so, but was swiftly denied by his management, who branded the claims as nonsensical.

September 6
September 6
03 Oct 2018

September 6

A reputable media outlet ran a report claiming that Bingbing flouted bank regulations on top of her tax evasion scandal, sharing that she had offered illegal loans and is suspected of corruption.

Again, these were not backed by solid evidence, but netizens pointed out that the said news outlet is viewed as a reputable financial newspapers and often corresponds with government officials to report on financial news.

September 8
September 8
03 Oct 2018

September 8

Bingbing’s younger brother, Chengcheng, attended a fan meeting in Nanjing with his group NEX7. He gained attention for shedding tears during the event and declaring that he hopes to have “the power to protect my family”.

His statement, “In 10 years, I’ll be 28 years old. I don’t know if I’ll still be able to stand on this stage in a decade”, also caused speculation that he has been removed from endorsements and cannot leave the country due to his sister’s scandal.

September 7
September 7
03 Oct 2018

September 7

A high-level official from Beijing is said to have confirmed Bingbing was in prison. The said official added that she had been brought in for interrogation in June but was released two days later. She was then arrested in early August and was said to be in a “miserable” state and “won’t be able to get out” of prison again.

September 10
September 10
03 Oct 2018

September 10

Chinese film director Feng Xiao Gang, who directed the movie Cell Phone 2 which Bingbing was involved in, also became embroiled in tax evasion rumours, and he issued a lengthy statement to strongly deny all claims.

He later deleted his post on social media, calling the internet trolls who were mongering hate against him “despicable”. 

September 28
September 28
03 Oct 2018

September 28

Reports of brands that Bingbing endorse, such as jewellery brand, De Beers, as well as health supplement brand, Swisse Wellness seeking to replace Bingbing emerged as the actress had disappeared from the public eye for over 100 days.

October 1
October 1
03 Oct 2018

October 1

Chengcheng was spotted dining in Seoul, effectively putting rumours of the star being prohibited to leave the country to rest. Throughout his sister’s scandal, he has maintained his silence about the entire affair, and refused comment about any topics related to it.

October 3
October 3
03 Oct 2018

October 3

Bingbing finally updates her Weibo with a public apology. This came soon after the taxation authorities reportedly fined her more than RMB 479 million (S$95.84 million) over tax evasion and ordered her to pay up more than RMB 255 million (S$51 million) in overdue taxes

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