Railway film farce ends in investigation for couple

Source:Global Times Published: 2012-7-28 0:15:03

A married couple, both officials at the Ministry of Railways, are under investigation following a report by the State Audit Administration, China's top auditor, after a massively expensive promotional film proved a flop, ministry insiders  told the media. 

The five-minute publicity film produced by the ministry cost 18.5 million yuan ($2.91 million), the State Audit Administration's report showed, and the short film "failed to achieve its desired effects" since few people saw the movie until the scandal broke.

The couple, Chen Yihan, deputy secretary-general of the ministry's literary and art association, and her husband, Liu Ruiyang, deputy director of the vehicle department, have been under investigation since earlier in July, caixin.com reported. Insiders commented that their disappearance had been little noticed.

According to the report, inspectors seized more than 10 million yuan in cash and at least nine Beijing property ownership certificates at their home, and massive deposit books and shopping cards in Liu's office.

The publicity film, Chinese Railways, was shot in 2010 without going through a public bidding process, and was claimed to be by one of China's best-known directors, Zhang Yimou, according to the audit report.

On July 2, Zhang's assistant said Zhang did not take part in the filming, but offered some suggestions about early reels, and he did not agree to have his name used.

Global Times

Posted in: Society

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