Jaycee Chan, son of world-famous actor Jackie Chan, was formally arrested in Beijing on Wednesday following a drug bust at his home. The arrest was formally approved by the Doncheng District Procuratorate, similar to a prosecutor in the United States.
The arrests and busts were made on August 14 and, as The Inquisitr reported, could have resulted in death penalty charges on Jaycee Chan. The young actor’s career in China may be over, despite the international celebrity of his father and the popularity of the young Chinese actor in his home country.
Jaycee Chan and a friend, Taiwanese actor Ko Chen-tung, were arrested after being caught smoking marijuana at a foot massage parlor. Police say both young men admitted to taking the drug and more than 100 grams of marijuana were found in Jaycee Chan’s home upon a search, according to Xinhua News. Ko Chen-tung was held for fourteen days of detention and released August 29.
A new crackdown by police on celebrities for drug abuse, prostitution and similar crimes has been ongoing in Beijing. Jaycee Chan, 31, faces up to three years of prison for allowing other people to consume drugs. Jackie Chan has formally apologized for his son’s actions and pledged to work with his son. Chan is an anti-drug ambassador for China, being named so in 2009 by Chinese authorities for his work in anti-drug campaigns.
China’s President Xi Jinping issued a declaration in June calling for the wiping out of all illegal drug use in China, promising severe punishment for offenders. Jaycee Chan is the most high profile of the arrests so far and so could face maximum sentencing as an example of the no-leniency policy. CBC News reports that actors who are caught using drugs could also be blackballed by performing arts associations and theater companies in Beijing.
A commentary published Wednesday in the Global Times, a popular tabloid published by the official People’s Daily, said celebrities should not expect leniency from the government or the public after sex or drug scandals. The commentary said that leniency like that shown in the U.S. to celebrities like Kobe Bryant and Hugh Grant would not be tolerated in China.
“Chinese entertainment figures are subjected to higher standards of morality than their Western counterparts.”
Jaycee Chan will likely remain in jail until his trial. A trial date for the Hong Kong actor has not been set, but will likely come soon given his status.