China / Society

Online rumormonger to go on trial Friday

( Updated: 2014-04-08 16:55

Qin Zhihui, better known by his online name of Qin Huohuo, will go on trial in Beijing at 9 am Friday, accused of fabricating rumors on the Internet and harming others' reputation, the court said Tuesday in its official micro blog at Sina Weibo.

The public trial will be broadcast live at the micro blog of the Beijing Changyang District Court. Qin is also accused of the crime of provoking trouble.

Qin, 30, said on his micro blog that the government had paid 200 million yuan ($32.7 million) in compensation to a foreign passenger after two trains collided in Wenzhou, Zhejiang province, in July 2011. The story turned out to be nothing but a rumor, police said.

Qin was arrested in August with five other employees connected to the Erma Co. Yang Xiuyu, founder of the Erma Co. with the online persona Lier Chaisi, allegedly spread rumors to attract followers and "helped" others to delete posts in return for money.

Qin and others were also accused of other libels.

They were said to defame Lei Feng, an altruistic icon in China for the past five decades, by stating that Lei actually lived a life of luxury, and accused the government of exaggerating his life story and reputation.

Following the Guo Meimei and the Red Cross Society scandal, they were said to have made up stories that local officials were required to donate to the Red Cross and defamed the charity system in China.

They also are said to have made and spread the rumor that Zhang Haidi, the chairwoman of the China Disabled Persons' Federation, held Japanese nationality.

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