Chinese billionaire under investigation over sexual assault allegations in Minneapolis–Washington Post

What happened: founder and chief executive Liu Qiangdong was arrested last Friday night on suspicion of sexual misconduct in the US city of Minneapolis. Financial Times quotes two sources as saying that a Chinese student at the University of Minnesota was the victim of the alleged assault. Liu was released the following day, and police say that the investigation is ongoing. On Sunday, however, released a Weibo statement claiming that Liu was in the US for a business trip, and was arrested and questioned “based on unsubstantiated claims.”

Why it’s important: In July, Liu was identified to be indirectly involved with an Australian sexual assault case. Although he was not charged for any crime, the multibillionaire reportedly tried to keep his name out of the press. The most recent case subjects Liu to scrutiny once again just as discussion of corporate responsibility is rife following recent ride-hailing scandals.

Bailey Hu is based in China’s hardware capital, Shenzhen. Her interests include local maker culture, grassroots innovation and how tech shapes society, as well as vice versa.

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