Chinese Communist "princeling" Bo Xilai, expected by many to take a key leadership position in the leadership transition of 2012, was expelled from the Communist Party in September after a career that saw him as Mayor of Dalian City, Minister of Commerce and Party Chief of the Chongqing municipality. His wife Gu Kailai received a suspended death sentence in August 2012 for murdering British business partner Neil Heywood.
Zhang mulls libel action over paid-sex allegation
Film star Zhang Ziyi said she visited Hong Kong yesterday, following media reports she had been barred from leaving the mainland because of an alleged relationship with disgraced princeling-politician Bo Xilai .
On Tuesday the actress issued an angry rebuttal on her Sina microblog account of allegations she had been paid to have sex with Bo under an arrangement made by Xu Ming, a Dalian-based tycoon and one of Bo's close allies.
Bo remains under investigation by the Communist Party's anti-graft watchdog - the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection - for 'serious disciplinary violations'. He was removed from his post as Chongqing party chief in March. Xu is also thought to be the subject of an investigation by the watchdog.
Beijing has yet to announce its verdict in the Bo investigation.
On her microblog yesterday, Zhang said she had met her lawyers in Hong Kong to discuss possible legal action against Apple Daily, which published the rumours based on a report that ran on the US-based Chinese- language news website Boxun.com.
The site reported that Zhang began sleeping with Bo in 2007, for which Xu paid her 10 million yuan, and that their relationship lasted until last year. Zhang was also accused of making 700 million yuan by sleeping with senior mainland officials and businessmen, including Xu. Zhang's assistant called the report 'extremely absurd and slanderous' and 'an absolute libel with an ulterior motive' in a statement, and said Zhang was forced to formally respond and seek possible legal action.
The report is absurd, an absolute libel with an ulterior motive Actress Zhang Ziyi's assistant