Zheng Shuang was fined $46 mn for tax evasion by Shanghai tax authorities

Zheng Shuang

While filming a TV series in Shanghai, Shanghai tax authorities fined Zheng 299 million yuan (S$62 million) for tax fraud and unreported income between 2019 and 2020 As China intensifies its fight against celebrity culture, top Chinese actress Zheng Shuang was fined for tax violation on Friday (27 August), while references to film star Vicki Zhao were removed from video streaming platforms.After a series of scandals in recent months that have brought down China's biggest performers, including singer Kris Wu, who was detained on suspicion of rape earlier this month,

Beijing is on a mission to reign in what it terms "chaotic fan culture" and celebrity excess.According to an internet announcement, Shanghai tax authorities fined Zheng 299 million yuan (S$62 million) on Friday for tax fraud and undeclared income between 2019 and 2020 while filming a TV series.After starring in the smash 2009 version of Taiwanese drama Meteor Shower and a string of other successful series and films, Zheng, 30, became a household figure in China.Her previous boyfriend accused her of leaving their two surrogate infants in the United States, and she was entangled in a surrogacy scandal earlier this year.Zheng's offensive TV drama was also cancelled, and producers were told not to recruit her for future episodes by China's state broadcasting regulator.

The State Administration of Radio, Film, and Television also stated that it had "zero tolerance" for tax evasion, "sky-high pay," and "yin-yang contracts," which are dodgy contracts used in Chinese showbiz to conceal artists' true pay.China's state media has gone all out to promote improvements to the country's entertainment culture."For some time now, artistes' moral failures and legal violations, the cultivation of younger idols, and 'chaotic' fandoms have attracted widespread attention in society," state broadcaster CCTV said on Tuesday."We must restore a clean and upright literary and artistic environment to the public."

On Thursday evening, major Chinese video streaming services restricted search results for Zhao, a hugely popular actress also known as Zhao Wei in Chinese.Her name was inexplicably erased from the credits of big TV shows, and a Weibo forum dedicated to the actress was also mysteriously taken down, with the hashtag "Zhao Wei super-topic closed" gaining 960 million views.There was no formal justification offered.Zhao, 45, and her husband, however, were recently barred from trading on the Shanghai Stock Exchange due to a failed 2016 takeover effort that the authorities deemed "disrupted market order."

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