China launched a fierce crackdown on the free flow of information, particularly on the internet and social media, ahead of the 19th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) held in October.
On December 20, JCRB.com , the website managed by China’s Supreme People’s Procuratorate, reported a criminal case involving a Chinese man Selling Vpns — a third-party service that routes web traffic through servers in another country or location.
(For netizens in China, VPNs are the only resort for them to bypass the Great Firewall and get access to the uncensored international internet.)
According to the report, the procuratorate in Pingnan County, Guangxi Province sentenced Wu Xiangyang to five-and-a-half years in Prison and a 500,000 yuan ($76,000) fine for selling VPNs without a proper license.
After the report of this latest case, hundreds of Chinese netizens commented to condemn the verdict, despite China’s severe censorship.
- Chinese entrepreneur sentenced to over five years' prison for selling VPN serviceDeutsche Welle
- China Jails Seller of VPN ServicesU.S. News & World Report
- China jails VPN owner for over five yearsThe Express Tribune
- Man in China sentenced to five years' jail for running VPNThe Guardian
- China sentences seller of VPN services to 5 1/2 years in prisonAsahi Shimbun
- China: Man Given 5 Years In Jail For Running VPNGazette Review
- A Chinese Man Got Five and a Half Years in Prison for Running a VPN to Bypass ...Gizmodo UK
- VPN Provider Jailed For Five Years After Helping Thousands Breach China's FirewallTorrentFreak