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This article was published on July 1, 2011

Chinese police arrest 36 in $6 million Alibaba fraud case

Chinese police arrest 36 in $6 million Alibaba fraud case
Francis Tan
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Francis Tan

Francis Tan is the Asia editor of TNW, who is based in the Philippines. He is particularly interested in Asian Internet startups, social me Francis Tan is the Asia editor of TNW, who is based in the Philippines. He is particularly interested in Asian Internet startups, social media and e-commerce. Get in touch with him via Twitter @francistan or Email [email protected].

Reuters reports that Chinese police have arrested 36 suspects responsible for the online fraud that transpired on China’s biggest B2B e-commerce platform, Alibaba, last February.

The suspects, allegedly in cahoots with over 100 Alibaba employees to pull of the scam, were accused of running a criminal gang that used fake personal and business identities to open accounts on Alibaba.com to cheat overseas buyers.

Yu Weimin, an investigator in the criminal investigation department at Hangzhou public security bureau, told China Daily that the suspects’ knowledge of foreign languages, international trade and computer skills helped them carry out their frauds on the company’s global e-commerce platform.

Alibaba, determined to clear its name, helped solve 281 fraud cases involving more than $6.6 million, said a Chinese police officer in Hangzhou.

The fraud scandal prompted the resignation of CEO David Wei and COO Elvis Lee last February. Although neither of them were directly involved with the defrauding, they both decided to take responsibility for the breakdown in the corporate culture that allowed it to happen.