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China fines 'live-streaming queen' Viya $210 million for tax evasion
[Image: a-screenshot-of-huang-wei-vita.jpg?id=25...height=700]

New Delhi/Beijing (CNN Business)Chinese live-stream shopping influencer Huang Wei, known as Viya, has been hit with a whopping $210 million penalty for tax evasion and kicked off social media.

Viya — also known in China as the "live-streaming queen" — was ordered to pay 1.34 billion yuan in back taxes, late fees and fines, the State Taxation Administration said Monday on its website.

It's the largest penalty ever imposed on a live-streamer, according to the Chinese state tabloid Global Times, and a sign that President Xi Jinping's government won't be letting up pressure on internet celebrities anytime soon.

From 2019 to 2020, Huang evaded more than 640 million yuan ($100 million) in taxes "by falsely reporting the commission income she earned from live-streaming platforms," a tax official in Hangzhou said on Monday.

"If she can pay the tax, late fee and fine within the prescribed time limit, she will not be investigated for criminal accountability," the official added. "If she fails ... the tax authority will transfer it to the police department for processing according to law."

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