Chi­nese ac­tor Fan goes miss­ing

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The Asian Age - - World -

Hong Kong, Sept. 15: Imag­ine an ac­tor like An­gelina Jolie van­ish­ing com­pletely with no word about where she was.

Some­thing so strange has hap­pened in China, where one of its most fa­mous ac­tresses has dis­ap­peared with­out a trace amid an up­roar over tax eva­sion by celebri­ties.

Star­ring in Chi­nese and Western films, in­clud­ing the multi- mil­lion- dol­lar XMen fran­chise, Fan Bing­bing is one of China’s high­est- paid ac­tors.

In 2015, Time Mag­a­zine named her China’s “most fa­mous ac­tress.”

How­ever, the film star hasn’t been seen in pub­lic ■ since early June, when, ac­cord­ing to a post on her ver­i­fied so­cial- me­dia ac­count, she went to visit a chil­dren’s hos­pi­tal in Ti­bet.

In an ar­ti­cle by state me­dia Se­cu­ri­ties Daily on Septem­ber 6, which was later deleted, the pub­li­ca­tion said Fan was brought “un­der con­trol and about to re­ceive le­gal judg­ment.”

No of­fi­cial state­ment was made as to Fan’s where­abouts, or any crim­i­nal charges against her.

In 2011, the coun­try’s best- known artist, Ai Wei­wei, was de­tained for al­most three months dur­ing which time his where­abouts were un­clear. He was later re­leased af­ter he signed a con­fes­sion au­thor­i­ties de­scribed as be­ing re­lated to tax eva­sion.

Fan’s pur­ported prob­lems be­gan when al­leged copies of a film con­tract she signed were leaked onto China’s so­cial me­dia in late May.

Ac­cord­ing to state tabloid Global Times, she had two dif­fer­ent con­tracts, one for tax pur­poses say­ing she was paid $ 1.5 mil­lion ( 10 mil­lion yuan) and a sep­a­rate, pri­vate con­tract for $ 7.5 mil­lion ( 50 mil­lion yuan). It’s a prac­tice known in China as “yin- yang con­tracts,” a form of tax eva­sion where the first, smaller con­tract is re­ported to au­thor­i­ties while the sec­ond, larger one is treated as tax- free in­come. The man be­hind the leak, Chi­nese TV host Cui Yongyuan, apol­o­gised in June to Fan for his ac­tions, but the State Ad­min­is­tra­tion of Tax­a­tion of China urged in­ves­ti­ga­tors to look into al­le­ga­tions of yin- yang con­tracts in the film in­dus­try.

Fan’s team is­sued a fu­ri­ous de­nial, but the ac­tress hasn’t been seen in pub­lic since the dis­pute.

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