The son of a renowned Chinese military singer was on Thursday sentenced to 10 years in prison over a gang rape case that has sparked heated debate over the justice system and lives of the elite.
Li Tianyi (17), the son of a the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) singer called Li Shuangjiang, had, along with four others, taken a woman from a bar to a hotel room and raped her on February 17, the court said.
The four other accused, three of them juveniles too, pleaded guilty while Li contested the charges. They were given jail terms ranging from between three and 12 years, the official Xinhua news agency reported.
The case generated wide attention in China, in part because of the older Li’s stature as a famed PLA tenor and regular performer on State media. Last month’s trial also took place at a time of renewed focus on the lives of the party elite in the wake of corruption scandals.
Li had first come into the public spotlight when he attacked an elderly Beijing couple after crashing his unlicensed luxury sports car into their vehicle. He was subsequently sent to a juvenile home, according to media reports, after the incident triggered debate about the wayward lives of many Communist Party “princelings”.