CHINA / SOCIETY
Kris Wu may be sentenced to 10 years to life imprisonment: lawyer
Published: Aug 01, 2021 03:28 PM
Kris Wu Photo: CFP

Kris Wu Photo: CFP


 
Chinese-Canadian pop idol Kris Wu will serve his sentence in China if convicted of multiple rape charges and will then be deported after serving his sentence, lawyers said on Sunday.

The comments came after the star was reported to be detained by Beijing police on suspected rape.

If the accusations are true and he is convicted, Wu may be sentenced to 10 years to life. After serving his sentence in China, Wu will be deported, an attorney from the Beijing Lanpeng Law Firm told the Global Times on Sunday. 

"Wu was detained and may be held on criminal liability. But any losses his endorsement business suffers falls under civil liability in accordance with the Contract Law," he added. 

Since the news of the star's detainment hit the internet, related posts and criticisms about Wu have flooded Chinese social media.

Liu Liu, a well-known female scriptwriter, apologized late Saturday night for comments defending Wu five years ago after a young woman posted accusations that the star had raped her. 

"Tonight, I'm seriously reflecting on myself. The biggest warning this has given me is on parenting and education on morality," she wrote, adding that she will close her Sina Weibo account for half a year as a "self-punishment."

"To be honest when I first saw the statement from the police, I couldn't believe it. A scriptwriter couldn't even make up a story like this," she noted, going on to criticize Wu, "I despise Kris Wu… The last five years, he didn't learn any lessons, didn't restrain himself." 

The official Sina Weibo account of big-budget costume drama The Golden Hairpin, which stars Wu, deleted all posts related to him on Sunday, leaving only a poster featuring the show's supporting characters. 

The Golden Hairpin, produced by Tencent Video, is Wu's first TV drama.

Some netizens expressed their concern that the drama team might use AI technology to change Wu's face into that of another person and thus influence the quality of the drama. 

"From the current situation reported by the police, Wu's acting career in China is likely to come to an end, and his related films and TV dramas will inevitably be affected," Xiao Fuqiu, a film critic based in Shanghai, told the Global Times.

Shi Wenxue, a cultural critic based in Beijing, echoed Xiao that The Golden Hairpin might not be able to air. As a big budget drama with an investment of more than 600 million yuan ($92 million), it has already obtained a broadcast license. However, since the scandal broke out, the stock markets of three listed companies including Tencent, China Literature and Phoenix fell, which means losses should far exceed the investment of the drama. 

"This drama has left an indelible impression on netizens and audiences. So it is difficult to save the drama by just changing the face in AI, the drama's word of mouth may be backlashed," Shi said.

Li Xueqin, a well-known talk show star who claims that she is a fan of Wu, deleted all her posts related to the idol.  

On Sina Weibo, the platform's super topic about Wu has been taken down.

Currently, the hashtag "losing fans" has gone trending on Sina Weibo as Wu's account on the platform continues losing followers at a rapid pace. For instance, the follower count on the account dropped from 51.57 million to 51.56 million in just one hour on Sunday morning.

Chinese media has reported that that all of Wu's affiliated companies have closed except one in which the company's executive affairs partner is Wu's cousin and Wu holds 99.99 percent of the shares.

Chinese media outlets including People's Daily, China Women's News, the Committee of Political and Legal Affairs of the CPC Central Committee's official news website, Legal Daily, China anti-drug network have all released posts commenting on the severity of the Wu scandal and noting that it will be handled in accordance to the law. 

"'Kris Wu Incident' is no longer entertainment gossip tainted with a peachy atmosphere, but a real legal incident. It also teaches the whole society a very solid lesson that everyone is equal before the law," writes the Legal Daily. 


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