World

Chinese minister sues billionaire over 'false' claims

BEIJING A Chinese government housing vice-minister has lodged a US$10 million (S$13.6m) defamation lawsuit against controversial billionaire Guo Wengui over claims made by the exiled tycoon that she had engaged in corruption and provided sexual favours.

Ms Huang Yan, vice-minister of housing and urban-rural development, filed the complaint with the New York State Supreme Court last week, saying Mr Guo's "false and outrageous" claims, in a video published on YouTube in May, had caused her "severe emotional distress" and "mental anguish".

It is the first legal case brought by an individual Chinese government official since Guo began making accusations of high-level Communist Party corruption.

Ms Huang's complaint says Mr Guo had falsely alleged that she helped real estate developers secure project approvals by providing sexual favours to a Beijing government official, and in turn received property assets from the developers who benefited. - REUTERS

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