Two of Jackie Chan’s luxury mansions in Beijing — including the home where his son was infamously arrested for distributing marijuana and harboring drug users — have been abruptly seized by authorities.
Details are few but speculation abounds as fans work to figure out what’s happening. A prevailing theory is that Jackie Chan may be facing blowback over old tax evasion; he bought the property for 13 million RMB (around $2 million USD), a 20.6 million RMB discount over the original purchasing price, in exchange for a celebrity endorsement of the property. The differential was converted directly into credit for his use, without passing through official tax channels.
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Celebrity tax evasion has been the subject of heated public discussion in China ever since fellow A-lister Fan Bingbing was exposed over “ying yang contracts.”
Still, the timing of the seizure has raised some eyebrows. At a tense time in the world, Jackie Chan is a vocal supporter of China’s government with major influence in Hong Kong and the US — why move now, after Jackie’s family lived in the home for 13 years?
Some speculate that the roots of the decision may go deeper than tax evasion, and that the sudden seizure of Jackie Chan’s properties could be related to the government’s inner workings.
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Jackie Chan has long been a pseudo-governmental figure in China with a host of powerful friends, even drawing public ire over the official military license plate on his car which allowed him to bypass tolls and other fees. But most of Jackie’s connections are through the Jiang clique, a camp of older officials who have butted heads with the current administration. The timing of the pressure on Jackie Chan seems to line up with the end of China’s high-power Beidaihe meeting, and subsequent pressure on other officials from the clique.
Jackie Chan’s real life is starting to be more exciting than his movies — after his son’s highly-publicized jail time, and his daughter’s recent marriage to her influencer girlfriend, the seizure of his Beijing mansions is only the most recent plot development.
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