Chinese star Fan Bingbing re-emerges after tax scandal

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Chinese superstar Fan Bingbing has reappeared in public following a year’s absence from the spotlight, after authorities targeted her in a crackdown on tax evasion in the entertainment industry.

The 37-year-old actress, model, singer and producer has been a ubiquitous household name in China for years and crossed over to Hollywood fame with a role in the 2014 blockbuster “X-Men: Days of Future Past.”

But she disappeared from the public eye and her once prolific social media presence went silent last May after allegations emerged she had evaded taxes on a lucrative movie shoot - charges denied by her studio.

Over the past year, she was not seen in public and only rarely appeared on social media.

She made a return to the spotlight on Monday, walking down the red carpet at a Beijing party for Chinese online video platform iQiyi.

Fan posted pictures of herself on Instagram wearing a pink and black Alexander McQueen pantsuit and carrying a Louis Vuitton bag at the gala.

Supporters cheered her return on the photo sharing platform, writing “I missed you” and “The queen is back” - though others complained that she had escaped stricter punishment by tax officials.

Fan topped Forbes magazine’s list of top-earning Chinese celebrities with income of 300 million yuan ($44 million) in 2017.

In October, authorities ordered her to pay 883 million yuan in back taxes, fines and penalties as part of a wider crackdown on the entertainment industry.

She also apologized to China’s Communist Party and her nearly 63 million fans on China’s popular Weibo social media platform.

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