TAIPEI, Taiwan – Chinese-Canadian pop star Kris wu was arrested by Beijing police on suspicion of rape, police said on Saturday, following an accusation that the former member of Korean boy group EXO lured young women into sex.
Wu, 30, was accused by a teenager of having sex with her while she was drunk. Wu denied the accusation.
The teenager said seven other women contacted her to tell her Wu seduced them with promises of jobs and other opportunities. She said some were under 18 but gave no indication if they were younger than China’s age of consent of 14.
Wu was “criminally detained” on suspicion of rape “in response to relevant information reported on the Internet,” including that he “repeatedly lured young women into having sex,” the statement said. of the police. He gave no further details.
Lawyers told state media World time that, if found guilty, Wu would serve his sentence in China and then be deported. He could face 10 years in life imprisonment, an attorney for the Beijing Lanpeng law firm said on Sunday.
The pop star had previously denied the charges. “There was no ‘groupie sex’! There was no “minor”! Wu wrote on his social media account last month. “If there was that sort of thing, please relax everyone, I would go to jail!”
News was becoming the most searched topic on Weibo on Saturday night, and some online users started commenting on Wu’s social media account, telling him to “Get out of China!” “
Wu is a Canadian citizen, according to the police statement.
The Communist Party’s official newspaper, the People’s Daily, weighed in on the case, saying in a short online opinion piece that “having a foreign nationality is not a protective talisman, no matter how small the name is.” , there is no immunity. . “
The teenager made her accusations public on social media and later in an interview with internet portal NetEase. A day after the publication of this interview, at least 10 brands, including Porsche and Louis Vuitton, broke sponsorship agreements with Wu.
According to the interview, the teenager thought she would meet Wu for a career opportunity. Instead, her staff who were present forced her to drink. As someone who hasn’t been to bars, she said her tolerance was low and she was drunk after two drinks. The next day, she woke up in Wu’s bed. That morning, he was kind to her and promised to take care of her, she said.
The teenager said it was the start of what she believed to be their relationship. This was the case until March, when he stopped sending her messages.
At first she said she felt sorry for herself. But after learning that there were other women who had been treated the same, she said she felt there were others who were in a worse situation.
“I don’t think it’s just my personal business. You can even say it’s a problem with the atmosphere in the entertainment circle in China, ”she said in the NetEase interview.
Wu said he met the young woman on December 5, 2020, but “I didn’t force her to drink” and “there weren’t those kinds of ‘details’ that she describes.”
“I didn’t expect my silence to encourage these rumors, and I couldn’t stand it!” Wu wrote previously. “There were a lot of people there that day who can testify. “
In an unexpected turn of history, police said last week they arrested a man who tried to defraud both parties. The man, nicknamed Liu, posed as a victim who had a similar experience with Wu in order to obtain personal information from the young woman.
The teenager and Wu both said they asked authorities to investigate.
Saturday’s statement made no mention of the case and gave no information on the status of this investigation.
Contribution: Hannah Yasharoff, USA TODAY