Date
21 January 2017
Chinese tourists descend on the Parthenon ruins in Greece. A tour guide was held hostage by a Chinese man unless she reimbursed him for tax on his luxury watch on the group's return from a shopping spree in Europe. Photo: skift.com
Chinese tourists descend on the Parthenon ruins in Greece. A tour guide was held hostage by a Chinese man unless she reimbursed him for tax on his luxury watch on the group's return from a shopping spree in Europe. Photo: skift.com

Angry Chinese tourist holds guide hostage over luxury watch tax

A Taiwanese tour guide was held hostage by a mainland tourist after he was made to pay tax on a luxury watch on the group’s return to China from a trip to Europe.

A man refused to let the guide, surnamed Cheng, off the bus that was taking the group back to Zhejiang province unless she reimbursed him for the levy.

Others in the group helped free Cheng while the suspect fled with the help of accomplices.

The incident happened on July 8 as the 24-strong group was returning from a 16-day tour to Europe, according to am730.

Cheng had warned the tourists not to wear the expensive watches they had bought in Europe when they check into customs in Shanghai airport.

Most complied but others, including the hostage taker, surnamed Wang, ignored the warning.

They ended up paying luxury tax of about 76,000 yuan (US$12,243) combined. 

Wang blamed Cheng for the fiasco and held her against her will unless she paid up.

Two others who were forced to pay tax helped Wang escape after fellow passengers came to Cheng’s rescue.

Taiwanese netizens condemned the incident after the local media broke the story on Monday.

Cheng, a 12-year tour veteran, said she plans to press charges.

She urged China to pay more attention to the quality of its tourists.  

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TL/AC/RA

Chinese tourists gather for photos in Paris. A Taiwanese tour guide is urging China to pay more attention to the quality of its tourists. Photo: Bloomberg


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