China’s high-profile celebrities fined for tax evasion

4 days ago 50

BEIJING – Taxation authorities have pledged to step up supervision on the entertainment industry after a popular actress and an internet influencer were hit with heavy fines for tax evasion.

Yuan Bingyan, a film and television actress who graduated from the prestigious Shanghai Theatre Academy, was fined almost 3 million yuan (S$571,000) by tax authorities in Chongqing, where her company Chongqing Liyan Culture Media Co is registered, according to a statement on the State Taxation Administration’s website.

The 31-year-old’s fines were for tax evasion and other penalties, including overdue tax payments.

Chongqing Liyan Culture Media Co was separately ordered to pay a 1.32 million yuan fine for unpaid taxes and other penalties. All the fines have been paid, according to the administration’s statement.

Last year, local taxation authorities imposed a 978,000-yuan fine on Chongqing Liyan Culture Media Co for tax-related misconduct.

Suspecting tax fraud, local tax authorities reminded Yuan, who held a controlling interest in the company, of their doubts and urged her to rectify the situation. However, Yuan failed to fully report her wrongdoings, prompting authorities to launch a formal investigation.

The probe revealed that Yuan did not declare part of her income, and illegally presented her personal spending as corporate expenditure. The practices reduced the amount of both personal and corporate taxes, the statement said.

“The tax department will continue to strengthen tax supervision in the field of culture and entertainment, strictly investigate and punish tax-related violations in accordance with the law, constantly improve the tax law compliance of employees and enterprises in the field, and create a fair tax (system),” it said.

Meanwhile, “gossip” live-streamer Wu Chuan was forced to repay a total of 13.6 million yuan, the taxation administration said in a separate statement.

Wu, whose broadcasts on short-video platform Douyu can attract as many as 600,000 viewers, had dodged tax and resisted investigation.

Better known on the platform by his alias &...

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