Beijing’s ‘crime tipster’ population reaches 140,000 in 2017

Source:Global Times Published: 2018/1/29 14:43:39

The "Chaoyang masses" in Beijing amassed 140,000 members in 2017, state media reported Sunday.

Some 140,000 eagle-eyed crime stoppers gave 20,000 tips on offenses including theft of electronic bicycles, pick pocketing and suspected drug deals, reported Sunday.

Chaoyang police received about 8,300 valuable tips in 2017, leading to 370 cases with more than 250 suspects detained and 390 potential safety hazards cleared up, the report said.

Launched in March last year by Beijing police, the "Chaoyang masses" smartphone app empowers residents to tip off police for financial rewards.

The district's crime-watchers immediately aided police in cracking a series of high-profile cases involving drug-taking celebrities and prostitution.

Elite tipsters stand to earn 300 to 500 yuan ($45 to $76) a tip. Internet users jokingly refer to Chaoyang masses as the world's "fifth-largest intelligence agency."

"At first I downloaded the smartphone app intending to catch a celebrity taking drugs and report it on the platform," Gao Liao, a 30-year-old Chaoyang resident told the Global Times on Monday.

"I have now learned how to report a fire, knowledge about counter-terrorism as well as some knowledge about how to protect myself and others from the app," she said.

Authorities have thanked the "Chaoyang masses" for tips that landed celebrities in hot water, notably the case of actor Wang Xuebing, arrested in 2015 on drugs charges.

Global Times

Newspaper headline: Beijing crime tipsters numbered 140,000 in 2017

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