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China: media judgement

China: media judgement


A Shanghai court has sentenced the former leader of one of the most influential financial daily in China.

Mr. Shen one of the thirty leaders of the groups arrested since last year, https://www.linkedin.com/company/21st-century-united-media in a wave of high-profile arrests. The latter has also been sentenced to pay a fine of up to 60,000 Yuans ($9260) according to court reports.

The financial newspaper is accused of claiming large sums of money in exchange for the publication of information “positive”. They were also accused of threatening businesses and individuals who were proving not be complying. The former leader had apologized in court for his offense.
“I want to apologize to the companies that have been victims of crime in our society. If the presiding judge permits, I would like to get up and to apologize. “ he said.

This policy is part of the broad anti-corruption campaign among the leaders of the Communist Party and also in the business community. However, the wave of arrests of these officials and journalists have inflicted fears of repression against the most “liberal” media.

Another leader got a two-year suspension, and the verdicts for the other co-defendants should be pronounced later, added the court.

These accusations echo old practices in Chinese media where it was common to give pay journalists to ensure favourable treatment or to remove the web incriminating information.

The Beijing government has shown its determination to take action against corruption in several sectors; including the media which is already closely controlled by political authorities and censorship bodies.