Date
16 December 2017
LeTV chief Jia Yaoting says he plans to leave for Korea and wont be back in mainland China 'for the time being'. Photo: Xinhua
LeTV chief Jia Yaoting says he plans to leave for Korea and wont be back in mainland China 'for the time being'. Photo: Xinhua

LeTV chief flees to Hong Kong amid China shareholder probe

The chief executive of LeTV has fled to Hong Kong amid an investigation by Chinese authorities into one of its shareholders, Ming Pao Daily reported Wednesday.

Jia Yaoting left mainland China as the embattled online video portal faced cancellation of its internet license.

LeTV shareholder Ling Wancheng is being investigated for unspecified offenses, the report said.

Ling, brother of Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference deputy chairman Ling Jihua, invested 52 million yuan (US$8.5 million) in LeTV in 2008 through Beijing Huijin Lifang, according to Caijing magazine.

Jia expressed regret about the investment, equivalent to a 1 percent stake in LeTV.

He said he will leave Hong Kong for South Korea and has no plans to return to China “for the time being”, according to the report.

LeTV is said to be a key target in China’s efforts to clean up the internet. The company has been ordered to comply with tough new rules on online videos, Caijing said.

Jia left China on June 1 and was first reported to be on his way to the United States.

About a month later, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television launched a campaign to rid the internet and the TV industry of western influences.

LeTV shares were suspended on Oct. 24 after hitting a record low on July 17, the company said in a regulatory filing.

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