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Companies closed for illegal online deletions

Updated: 2013-12-05 13:29
( Xinhua)

BEIJING - Beijing police have shut down six companies and seized scores of suspects suspected of making more than 10 million yuan ($1.64 million) from deleting online information.

The local procuratorate has approved the arrests of 19 of those seized, who are suspected of crimes including illegal business, offering bribes to non-governmental staff and accepting bribes.

Announcing the actions on Wednesday, Beijing police said "Beijing Word-of-Mouth Interaction, Marketing and Plot Ltd." made use of intermediary agents to bribe website workers to delete negative information for its clients.

Since the company was set up in 2007, it monitored public opinions and maintained positive images for nearly 50 clients. It also operates a major business of offering paid services in deleting derogatory online news, with an annual revenue of more than 70 million yuan, the police said.

When questioned by the police, the head of the company's public relations department, surnamed Yang, said that it would first try to contact website staff to delete the targeted information. If that proved impossible, the company would find a mediatory agent to help with the task.

The police said that public security organs will further crack down on online crimes in accordance with laws and purify the online environment so as to maintain online order and protect netizens' legitimate rights.

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