Two Beijing-based luxury apartments belonging to martial arts film star Jackie Chan have reportedly been seized and put up for auction over an ownership dispute.
The two units were found on an ad in a Chinese judicial auction site last week at a starting price of $10.5 million and have a market value of over $14.6 million.
The homes cover more than 13,000 square feet and one of them was the scene of a drug scandal involving Chan’s son, Jaycee Chan, who served six months of Chinese imprisonment over claims that his home was being used as a venue for users.
Security guards stand at the main gate to a luxury apartment building in Beijing where two flats were seized from Hong Kong-born actor Jackie Chan in an ownership row.
Jackie Chan had signed an agreement with Yujia Real Estate in 2006 to buy the two units for $1.9 million and $2.9 million at a discount in exchange for celebrity endorsement of the compound.
But the transfer of rights were delayed due to a change in Yujia’s company name and tax arrears, the report added. Another developer, Tenhong Real Estate, later filed for arbitration with Yujia to settle debts and the two properties were amongst the assets seized in 2017.
The apartments, measuring 1,200 square meters, are located in Room 1001 and 1002 of Building 2, No. 9 Dongzhimen Inner Street of Dongmen District, Beijing.
Meanwhile, Hong Kong daily South China Morning Post reported that the apartments were where Chan’s son Jaycee had been arrested for possession and distribution of marijuana on August 18, 2014.
However, there is a dispute over the ownership as property developer Beijing Yujia Real Estate had not officially transferred the property rights to Chan after selling them in late 2007 for around with part of the funding covered by fees Chan had received for his promotional work with Yujia Real Estate.
Beijing property developer, Tenhong Real Estate Group, later filed for arbitration against Yujia Real Estate over a debt dispute where the court ordered the seizure of assets, including the two homes that Chan had bought.
The action star, 66, best known for hit movies “Rush Hour” and “Police Story”, sparked controversy in 2013 when he joined China’s top political advisory body despite being born in Hong Kong, where his reputation has taken a beating over his pro-Beijing stance.
Chan and his wife Joan Lin and son Jaycee Chan have lived in the high-end properties since 2007.
But a legal dispute between two real estate firms has resulted in the properties being commandeered and put up for sale, despite appeals by the star.
But court papers outline problems including a change in Yujia’s company name, as well as tax arrears, which delayed the transfer of the property rights to Chan.
A virtual tour of the property showed a maze-like space with a pool table, at least two walk-in wardrobes, a wine fridge and a framed photograph of Chan meeting former US president Barack Obama.
The property was also the scene of a 2014 drug scandal involving Chan’s son Jaycee, who served six months in a Chinese prison after he was found to be providing a venue for others to use drugs and possession of 100g of marijuana.
The properties are now valued at more than 100 million yuan, according to the auction listing.
Crossroads with JOSHUA PHILIPP:
A Beijing mansion belonging to movie star Jackie Chan has been seized by authorities and is now being put up for auction. Details are still thin, but some analysts believe Jackie Chan may have been targeted for alleged tax evasion, related to promotions he did from 2006 to 2008 for a land company in Beijing, which paid him 20.6 million Renminbi that was directly converted into credit for his purchase.
Yet, questions are being raised on why now, given that Jackie Chan’s family lived in the home for 13 years. And why have Beijing authorities seemingly ignored Jackie Chan’s influence in China, Hong Kong, and even in the United States, especially given his relatively positive stance on the Chinese leadership, in order to seize and auction his mansion.
Crossroads with JOSHUA PHILIPP:
The move may be related to factional battles within the Party. Jackie Chan’s ties are through the network of former vice-chairman Zeng Qinghong, who was under the Jiang Faction. This is the main faction fighting with the faction of Xi Jinping, the current head of the Party. The timing of this move appears to be related to the recent end of the Party’s high-level Beidaihe meeting, after which Xi Jinping launched new purges targeted areas of society still controlled by the Jiang faction.
In this episode of Crossroads, we’ll be taking an in-depth look at this story, and more.
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