'Super bus' investors detained for alleged illegal fundraising

Updated 2017-07-03 10:31:32 Global Times

Dozens of investors behind China's once famous "super bus" project have been arrested for alleged illegal fundraising, Beijing police said on Sunday.

A total of 32 people, including a male suspect surnamed Bai, have been arrested in relation to reports of illegal fundraising activities conducted by Huayingkailai, according to a post on the Beijing Police Dongcheng district division's official microblog.

Huayingkailai is a Beijing-based peer-to-peer lending company behind the Transit Elevated Bus projects, also known as "Batie," which straddles two traffic lanes, while allowing cars to pass underneath. The male suspect surnamed Bai is likely Huayingkailai's chairman Bai Zhiming.

The project once grabbed attention around the world for its vision but has drawn much controversy surrounding its feasibility and financing.

The project's developer Huayingkailai had reportedly been blacklisted by several local governments as a high-risk online lending company, and some investors for the project reported that their request to retrieve their investment had been declined by the firm.

Beijing police on Sunday said further investigation surrounding Huayingkailai is underway and investors should report to local law enforcement agencies in places where the contracts were signed and cooperate with them on the investigation.

"Police are fully investigating and collecting evidence and conducting other work such as recovery of assets involved in the case to best protect the legal rights of investors in accordance to law," the post read.

Huayingkailai had agreed to remove the project by the end of June and government officials in Qinhuangdao, North China's Hebei Province, where test for the bus was conducted, were preparing to remove the bus to a nearby parking lot, according to earlier media reports.

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