Entertainment

Missing X-Men actress reappears – and is billed £100m

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X-Men actress Fan Bingbing has been ordered to pay almost £100m in taxes and fines, according to Chinese state media.

Tax authorities issued the 884 million yuan fine but said they would spare the 37-year-old – one of the highest-paid stars in her country – from criminal prosecution.

It follows speculation over the whereabouts of the actress, who appeared in X-Men: Days Of Future Past and the Chinese version of Iron Man 3.

She had disappeared from public view in June following reports she was being investigated for tax fraud.

According to the Xinhua news agency, Fan is personally being fined about £54m of the total amount due for tax evasion.

Tax authorities said the entertainer would not face criminal charges if the total amount, which includes fines and late fees, is paid on time.

Image: The Chinese star previously appeared in X-Men: Days Of Future Past

The announcement did not disclose any details about Fan's whereabouts but did reveal that her agent was being held by officers for allegedly obstructing the investigation.

The actress and singer, who has starred in dozens of films and TV shows, had been booked to appear with Penelope Cruz in the film 355 and landed a role in Air Strike, which stars Bruce Willis.

Posting on social media website Weibo for the first time since June, Fan wrote: "I am unworthy of the trust of the society and let down the fans who love me."

She said she accepted the tax authorities' decision and would "try my best to overcome all difficulties and raise funds to pay back taxes and fines".

Fan's fine follows a crackdown on highly paid performers in June. Regulators capped pay for actors at 40% of a TV show's production budget and at 70% of the total paid to all performers in a film.

According to Chinese media, the actress evaded £800,000 in taxes by signing up to a secret contract worth £2.2m for Air Strike.

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It meant she reportedly only paid taxes on a contract worth £1.1m.

It is thought to be a common industry practice, with one contract stating a lower official salary.

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