Chairman of an aerospace investment company suspended after reportedly attacking, hospitalizing two senior academicians
Published: Jul 05, 2021 12:00 AM
Photo: China Newsweek

Photo: China Newsweek

The chairman of an aerospace investment company under the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) was suspended from his post and is under further investigation after the chairman reportedly beat two academicians severely that they required hospitalization, which has drawn huge attention on Chinese social media. 

According to a statement that CASC made on Sunday, the company has sent a team to conduct a comprehensive investigation into the case and will deal with the case seriously based on the result. 

Zhang Tao, the 57-year-old Chairman of China Aerospace Investment Holding Ltd., an investment management entity authorized by CASC, beat two academicians from the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA), an international non-governmental organization, 85-year-old Wang Jinnian and 55-year-old Wu Meirong, on June 6, according to a report by China Newsweek on Saturday, quoting a document that an industrial insider provided.

The document said Zhang invited the two academicians to visit his company and asked them to make a recommendation for him to be an academician of the IAA during the dinner. But Wang refused his request as it was the first time they had met and he did not have enough knowledge of the work Zhang had done. 

The refusal angered Zhang. He started a quarrel with Wang and stood up and tried to hit him. Wu, the other academician, felt very frightened sitting on the side and asked to leave the table. Around at 10: 30 pm, Zhang, with his subordinates, escorted the two academicians to their homes. Zhang kicked Wang in the elevator and beat the two severely, the document shows. 

Wang suffered rib fractures and multiple soft tissue injuries throughout the body, while Wu suffered spinal fractures and was hospitalized and required surgery, the China Newsweek reported, citing the hospital's diagnostic in the document. 

A staff member from the China Aerospace Investment Holding Ltd. told the China Newsweek on Friday that police had investigated the incident, and Zhang Tao was still at work.

CASC said in the statement that Zhang was drunk when he attacked the two academicians.