Zhou Zhenglong to stand trial on Sept. 23
Shaanxi farmer Zhou Zhenglong, who was arrested for doctoring photos of a South China tiger, will stand trial in Xunyang County on September 23 on charges of fraud and unlawful possession of ammunition, the Chengdu Business Daily reported Thursday.
Shannxi farmer Zhou zhenglong is seen in meditation in this undated photo. [Chengdu Business Daily]
Local police found 93 bullets for a halt-auto rifle when Zhou was arrested this June on suspicion of fraud.
Zhou, 54, claimed to have photographed a rare South China tiger in the wild on the afternoon of October 3, 2007. The fabricated photos of the tiger made a splash with the public and circulated widely online.
However, police found official proof of the photo's inauthenticity after a month-long investigation.
Local police cracked the case when they seized an old tiger poster that Zhou allegedly borrowed from a farmer in another village in September to produce the photos and a wooden model of tiger claw, which Zhou allegedly used to fabricate the paw print on snow.
Zhou has been kept in custody since his arrest in June.
Sources told the newspaper that Zhou, who previously insisted that he "risked his life to take photos of a real tiger," has now reflected on the issue and is very concerned about the upcoming sentence.
Though the "paper tiger" issue has aroused widespread attention, the case itself is not complicated, local attorneys say, and they predict that the verdict will be handed down in court.