The whistle-blower responsible for exposing the sex video scandal that has toppled six local Party and government officials and another five State-owned enterprise executives in Chongqing declined on January 28 to hand over more evidence on the case to Chongqing police, citing concerns over the safety of his source.
Zhu Ruifeng, a Beijing-based blogger with the Hong Kong-registered anti-corruption website jdwsy.com, walked out of a Beijing police station on January 28 after a seven-hour negotiation session with two Chongqing police officers.
Global Times, Jan. 29, 2013: Some officials ensnared in honey trap ‘yet to be netted’
A press officer surnamed Zhang from Chongqing's public security bureau told the Global Times that the police are doing all they can in terms of the investigation and will inform the public of any updates in a timely manner.Xinhua, Jan. 25, 2013: SW China police bust sex video extortion ring
Police in Southwest China's Chongqing have broken up a criminal ring suspected of using secretly filmed sex videos to extort officials, local authorities said on January 24.Xinhua, Jan. 25, 2013: 'Sex video' officials to be absent from legislative session
Eight officials from Southwest China's Chongqing implicated in a recent sex video scandal will not attend the city's annual legislative meeting, official sources said on January 25.
A total of 10 Chongqing officials were sacked for the sex scandals on late January 24, 2013 after Lei Zhengfu, the Party chief of Beibei district in Chongqing, was sacked just 63 hours after a video showing him having sex with a young woman was leaked online.
Illustration: Globaltimes.cnTimeline:Jan. 28, 2013:
||He had rejected the request made by the two officers, who had been seeking more tapes involving other high-ranking officials.|
"I also turned down their demand for the original version of those already exposed clips, for the safety of the person from Chongqing's police bureau who fed me the information," said Zhu, adding that he is not ready to publish the remaining evidence, as time is needed to authenticate them.
||A press officer surnamed Zhang from Chongqing's public security bureau told the Global Times that the police are doing all they can in terms of the investigation and will inform the public of any updates in a timely manner.|
||Si Weijiang, a Shanghai-based lawyer, told the Global Times there is no crime of withholding evidence, and that the process to compel Zhu to be a witness is not clear. The police have no right to forcibly request the evidence, he said.|
Zhu Ruifeng, a Beijing-based blogger with the Hong Kong-registered anti-corruption website jdwsy.com, walked out of a Beijing police station after a seven-hour negotiation session with two Chongqing police officers.
Zhu told the Global Times that he had rejected the request made by the two officers, who had been seeking more tapes involving other high-ranking officials.Jan. 27, 2013:
Zhu claimed some local officials involved in the scandal haven't yet been netted and accused local police of a coverup and destroying evidence.Jan. 24, 2013:
A total of 10 Chongqing officials were sacked for the sex scandals on late January 24, 2013.Nov. 23, 2012:
Lei Zhengfu, the Party chief of Beibei district in Chongqing, was sacked just 63 hours after a video showing him having sex with a young woman was leaked online.Nov. 22, 2012:
A probe into Lei by Chongqing disciplinary authorities began. A government source confirmed that a preliminary investigation found the sex video posted by Ji Xuguang, who registered with his real name on China's twitter-like website of Sina Weibo, had not been modified.Nov. 20, 2012:
Ji Xuguang, who identified himself as an investigative journalist on the website, uploaded seven microblogs, including the sex video on November 20. It showed a man looking like Lei having sex with a woman.Nov. 20, 2012:
Zhu Ruifeng exposed the video and the details of Lei's scandal and corruption evidence on media.people.com.cn.Source: Xinhua-Global Times
On impact of sex tap storm:GT editorial: Sex tape storm has profound impact
Officialdom is being reshaped, and the process will be dramatic and breathtaking. More and more officials will pull out. It's going to be dangerous in the near future for those who crossed the line. Officials overstepping legal and moral boundaries will face increasingly harsh consequences. Only those who make changes and watch their conduct will survive.On whistle-blower:Global Times: The power of the whistle-blower
Exposing scandals online has to be regulated but that authorities should be cautious when deleting posts or seeking to keep whistle-blowers quiet, as this would deter public participation.Ren Zhiqiang, Chinese real estate tycoon and chairman of the Huayuan Property Group
, commented on Zhu Ruifeng, who leaked the sex video of Lei Zhengfu, former district official in Chongqing, receiving death threats:
If we want to uproot evil forces, we must guarantee witnesses' safety.On sex tap mistress: Global Times: Sex tape mistress has right to dignity, too
But investigative journalism at its core should be about exposing wrongdoing, rather than orchestrating it and then selling it to the public. Corruption certainly qualifies as being in the public interest, but sex tape stings that expose little more than adultery are difficult to justify given the intense scrutiny and shame that women in such cameos face. Xinhua: China feels women's weight in fight against graft
China is a nation that values officials' virtues. "Proper life style," a euphemism that means one is not tarnished by an affair, is a basic qualification in the selection of government officials at all levels. Ethical failings, it is thought, leave officials susceptible to blackmail and other devious deals, as evidenced by the recently exposed scandal over vices including sex.On public anger Xinhua: Chinese officials' sex video scandal sparks public anger
"The government officials should be locked in a cage of regulations where they would not dare or be willing to turn corrupt. This is the key in tackling corruption. Otherwise, they will continue to become corrupt, one after another," a microblogger added.On Weibo anti-corruption:Beijing Times: The power and speed of anti-corruption efforts online reveal how many obstacles stand in the way of previous forms of anti-corruption. However, anti-corruption online may have negative effects, such as harming the Party's credibility and ruin the image of China's officials. The government should reform supervision practices and make them more effective.Global Times: Weibo anti-corruption a milestone for reform
Corruption disclosure through Weibo should be gradually regulated. Rumormongers should be punished and the public should be able to discern and denounce rumors. Without regulation, some may use online supervision as a camouflage to serve their own interests.
Officials outed after sex scandals surface online