Pop star Kris Wu has been sentenced to 13 years in prison for sex offences. The verdict comes just over five months after the trial began in June of this year.
The Chinese-Canadian singer, 32, was detained by Beijing police in July 2021 following an investigation into complaints that claimed that Wu had “repeatedly tricked young women into sex”.
This is what you need to know.
In July last year, 19 year old Chinese college student Du Meizhu posted allegations online that Wu had a pattern of sexual assault involving a number of different women, some of which were underage, whilst they were unconscious and under the influence of alcohol.
Du posted on the Chinese social media platform Weibo, and said that she had been raped whilst she was drunk on 5 December 2020 when she was 18, and said that she was speaking on behalf of at least seven other victims. Du said that two of the victims in question were minors - in China, the age of consent is 14.
She explained that she met Wu when she was 17, and alleged that he invited her to his home, along with other girls, where they were all pressured into drinking alcohol. She said that the next day, she woke up in his bed.
Du said that Wu would pay other women he had slept with to introduce him to more girls, and said that he paid her 500,000 yuan (£56,100) to “keep quiet” - however, she decided to speak out because she wanted to be “the last victim”. Du said that she was repaying the money and was ready to face legal action.
Wu denied the claims and, at the time, released a statement online which said: “I didn’t respond earlier because I didn’t want to interfere with judicial proceedings… but I cannot bear it anymore.”
He added: “I only met Miss Du once at a friend’s gathering, I didn’t ply her with alcohol.”
Following the allegations, a number of companies severed ties with Wu, including Porsche, Bulgari and Lancome.
He was formally arrested on 16 August 2021 on suspicion of rape.
What did the court say?
Wu was given 11 years and six months for a 2020 rape and 20 months for “assembling a crowd to engage in sexual promiscuity’ in 2018, when he and others attacked two women they got drunk, Beijing’s Chaoyang District Court said. Wu was also issued a deportation order after completing his prison term by the court.
“According to the facts … the nature, circumstances and harmful consequences of the crime, the court made the above judgement,” the court said in an online statement.
A Canadian diplomat was in court to hear the sentencing, it said.
Wu’s June trial was closed to the public to protect the victims’ privacy.
Rape is punishable by three to 10 years in prison, although exceptional cases can result in harsher sentences up to death.
He was also fined an additional 6,000,000 yuan (£69,231,729) for tax evasion.