The alleged involvement of a senior People Liberation Army (PLA) general and a famous singer’s teenage son in a gangrape has sparked online fury over the life styles that the children of the powerful are perceived to have in China.
Li Guanfeng, 17, was arrested by the police after the victim complained that she was assaulted by five men including Li in a room.
Police in Beijing's Haidian District said the rape victim told them that she was drinking with five people in a bar last Sunday. Subsequently, the men took her to a room, beat her and gangraped her, China News Service said.
Li’s is the son of well-known PLA singer, Li Shuangjiang, with a rank of a major general. He is also the dean of the music department of PLA’s Academy of Arts.
According to state media, Li and the remaining four suspects were arrested from a parking lot in Beijing’s Chaoyang district.
An adult found guilty of participating in gangrape can be imprisoned at least 10 years, according to Chinese criminal law
Reports said the teenager was only recently released from a youth reformation centre.
He was in trouble in 2011 when he rammed a couple in his BMW and then assaulted them, saying “Who will dare call the police?” Li spent a year in re-education through labour, and his father was forced to make a full apology.
Li Guanfeng was the name he adopted – from the original name Li Tianyi - after his release from the reformation centre.
China’s microbloggers recounted the story of a crash in March last year when a black Ferrari 458 Spider ran into a bridge, reportedly killing the driver and seriously injuring two female passengers.
Although the authorities refused to name the driver, local media reported he was Ling Gu, son of Ling Jihua, a close ally of president Hu Jintao.
Almost all online information about the car crash was deleted overnight, triggering suspicions as to the identity of the deceased driver. A state media editorial had commented: “Children of the wealthy and powerful families are known as China's rich or "second generation," a title earning them notoriety. Many media reports, revealing these children openly flout the law, have raised public debate over social conscience and the gap between the rich and poor.”