China Sentences Chinese-Canadian Actor Kris Wu to 13 Years

A former K-pop star has been sentenced to prison. Kris Wu, a Chinese-Canadian pop star, was sentenced to 13 years in prison on Friday for rape. Beijing's Chaoyang District Court sentenced Wu to eleven years and six months in prison for a 2020 rape and one year and ten months for the "crime of assembling a crowd to engage in sexual promiscuity" in a 2018 event in which he was accused of assaulting two drunk women. As well as being drunk, the victims of the rape could not consent to the rape, the court said. Wu was born and raised in Guangzhou, China, and in Vancouver, British Columbia. He will serve 13 years of a combined sentence and be deported to Canada immediately upon completion.

"According to the facts … the nature, circumstances and harmful consequences of the crime, the court made the above judgment," the court said in an online statement. In addition, Wu was fined 600 million yuan ($83.7 million) for evading taxes by drastically underreporting his earnings from performance, advertisement, and other income sources. In order to protect the privacy of the victims, the trial of the 32-year-old former member of the South Korean group EXO was closed to the public in June. The police have detained Wu since August 2021 because of comments online that he "repeatedly lured young women" to have sex, according to a police statement at that time.

That same year, a teenager accused him of having sex with her when she was drunk on Weibo, a Chinese media platform. During her relationship with Wu, she alleges that she was raped after being forced to drink alcohol. She said she was 17 when she was assaulted. The post also included pictures and screenshots to support her claim after she received threats from Wu's fans. The police had widely discredited her as a fame-seeker at the time.  According to the accuser, Wu's agency paid her hush money following the incident, but she spoke out two years later. Wu, also known as Wu Yifan in Chinese, denied the accusation. The teenager said that Wu allegedly seduced seven other women with promises of jobs and other opportunities and that some were under 18.

A Los Angeles woman shared her story of alleged underage rape on August 8, 2021, which started with her attending one of Wu's drinking parties. As she told her lawyer Jing Wang, "It's an open secret that he [Wu] selects concubines among international students." Wu's assistant invited her to a gathering where she saw this firsthand. To prevent photos and videos from being taken, the girls turned in their phones before entering the venue. Among the other accusations leveled at Wu were that he never took any safety precautions when assaulting the girls, contracted an STI while seeing a girl, and forced her to get an abortion. Wu would also "pick up" young, pretty fangirls, bring them to what he called a mini fan convention, and tell them that more fans would join them. Upon arriving at the "convention" site, the group would quickly realize that they were alone with Wu in a hotel room. Several networks later blacklisted Wu after numerous companies cut ties with him: brand endorsement deals were terminated, and social media posts featuring him were removed. In China, rape is punishable by three to 10 years in prison, but in exceptional cases, the punishment can be as harsh as the death penalty. A second charge against Wu is punishable by up to five years in prison.

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If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, you can contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) or go to rainn.org.