One of the first Chinese influencers sentenced to jail for selling diet pills containing banned drug

ByDonald L. Leech

Oct 28, 2021

A Chinese social media personality was sentenced to two and a half years in prison for allegedly “selling poisonous and harmful food.”

Prohibited substance: Guo Meiling, a 30-year-old online influencer also known as Guo Meimei, was convicted in January and February of selling candy and diet pills containing the appetite suppressant sibutramine, reported South China Morning Post.

  • Sibutramine, which has been linked to multiple serious side effects, is banned in China and several other countries.

  • Guo was one of 32 people who were caught selling or manufacturing commercial products containing sibutramine, according to the state agency. World time.

  • In addition to the prison term, Guo was also fined 200,000 yuan (approximately $ 31,280) while her accomplice, Wang Zouya, will serve seven months in prison and will be fined 10,000 yuan (approximately 1,600 dollars).

  • Chinese criminal law states that anyone who “knowingly mixes harmful substances into foods for sale, or knowingly sells such foods, can be sentenced to up to five years in prison.” This sentence could be extended up to 10 more years if the product “caused an accident or other damage”.

Not the first time: Guo, one of the first prominent online influencers in China, has encountered problems with Chinese authorities in the past over her social media activities.

  • In 2011, she suffered a backlash after allegedly claiming to be the director of an organization under the Chinese Red Cross (RCSC).

  • The way Guo has flaunted his lavish lifestyle online has negatively impacted the reputation of the RCSC despite the eventual refusal of Guo and the RCSC to have connections.

  • In 2014, Guo appeared on state television in prison attire and cried apologizing for her luxurious lifestyle and previous allegations that affected the RCSC.

  • In 2015, Guo was convicted of running a casino. She was sentenced to five years in prison and fined 50,000 yuan (approximately $ 7,800). She was released from prison four years later.

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