Chinese Actress Zheng Shuang Fined INR 455 Crore for Tax Evasion

According to an internet notice, Shanghai tax officials fined Zheng Shuang 299 million yuan (S$62 million) on Friday for tax fraud and undeclared income between 2019 and 2020.

By Yashika Goel/The Newster

Zheng Shuang (Pic: Aaron Tam/AFP)

Shanghai tax officials fined Chinese actor Zheng Shuang 299 million yuan (S$62 million) for tax fraud and undeclared income between 2019 and 2020 when she was filming a TV series in Shanghai according to a report published in the Firstpost.

Top Chinese actress Zheng Shuang was penalized for a tax infringement on 27 August, and references to film star Vicki Zhao were removed from video streaming platforms, as China continues its fight against celebrity culture.

Following several of the recent scandals that have dragged down China’s top stars, including singer Kris Wu, who was imprisoned on suspicion of rape earlier this month, Beijing is on a mission to rein in “chaotic fan culture” and celebrity excess, as it calls it.

According to an internet notice, Shanghai tax officials fined Zheng 299 million yuan (S$62 million) on Friday for tax fraud and undeclared income between 2019 and 2020.

After starring in the smash 2009 version of Taiwanese drama Meteor Shower and a string of other successful series and films, Zheng, became a household figure in China.

Her ex-boyfriend accused her of leaving their two surrogate infants in the United States, and she was entangled in a surrogacy scandal earlier this year.

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Zheng’s offensive TV drama was also cancelled, and China’s official broadcasting regulator warned producers not to hire her for future episodes.

The State Administration of Radio, Film, and Television also stated that tax evasion, “sky-high remuneration,” and “yin-yang contracts,” which are shady contracts used in Chinese showbiz to hide performers’ genuine pay, have “zero tolerance.”

China’s state media has gone to great lengths to promote the country’s entertainment culture.

“Actors’ moral failings and legal transgressions, the nurturing of younger idols, and ‘chaotic’ fandoms have drawn extensive attention to societies for some time now,” state broadcaster CCTV stated on Tuesday.

“We must return the people to a clean and upright literary and artistic atmosphere.”

On Thursday evening, major Chinese video streaming sites prevented Zhao, a tremendously popular actress also known as Zhao Wei in Chinese, from appearing in search results.

Her name was inexplicably erased from the credits of big TV shows, and a Weibo forum dedicated to the actress was also taken down, with the hashtag “Zhao Wei super-topic closed” gaining 960 million views.

There was no formal justification offered

Zhao, 45, and her husband, however, were recently barred from trading on the Shanghai Stock Exchange due to a failed 2016 takeover effort that the authorities deemed “disrupted market order.”

On Thursday, video streaming platform iQiyi announced the cancellation of all idol talent shows, while a Chinese boy band made up of primary school students disbanded earlier this week after the singers’ ages prompted public outrage.

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