BEIJING, Feb. 20 (Xinhua) -- Chinese police have arrested 10
people suspected of allegedly producing, selling and purchasing discs of nude
photos of Hong Kong celebrities in the southern city of Shenzhen.
Police confiscated about 250 discs featuring graphic photos of entertainer Edison Chen and some female starlets, in addition to six computers used to produce the discs, in the Guangdong Province city bordering Hong Kong a week ago, the Southern Metropolitan News reported on Wednesday.
Three people were given five-day administrative detentions and two others, a 19-year-old man surnamed Jiang and a 27-year-old man surnamed Ma, were under criminal detention. They were still being questioned by police, the paper said, citing the Shenzhen Municipal Public Security Bureau.
The other five were released.
"The police authorities will severely crackdown on the criminal activities of manufacturing, selling and spreading discs of Hong Kong's celebrity photos and other porn productions," a police spokesman was quoted as saying.
On Wednesday, Beijing police said it was illegal for people to spread the celebrity photos to their friends even without the purpose of making profit, or in posting such photos on their web blogs and on-line chat rooms.
"Those who are found to do so can face detention of up to 15 days, according to the country's regulations on administrative penalties for public security," a Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau spokesman told the Legal Evening News.
He urged netizens to call police if they find some Web sites posting such photos. Police will order the web site operator to delete the photos that may exert a "bad impact" on youngsters.
Last month, photos of the Canadian-born Chen caught in sexual acts with various Hong Kong starlets surfaced on the Internet and had spread like wildfire ever since.
Thirteen on-line portals on the mainland issued a joint statement asking domestic websites to boycott such nude photos.
It urged netizens and web site staff to be self-disciplined and prevent the postings and dissemination of such images by pledging not to download, spread or speculate on the photos.
So far, more than 40 domestic websites have supported the statement and many Chinese netizens have pledged not download or spread the Chen photos.
In addition, Chinese Internet search engine Baidu.com has been asked by a Beijing Internet self-discipline organization to make a public apology for spreading the photos.
The Beijing Internet News Information Review Council, initiated by the government-sponsored Beijing Association of Online Media, issued a statement on Monday criticizing the Nasdaq-listed web site's conduct in relation to the photos.
The statement meanwhile praised other big mainland websites, including Sohu.com, Sina.com and Netease. Those sites had called for Internet users "not to download, save and spread the photos" and "to prevent the photos from falling into the hands of children".