Chinese authorities detained a leading television anchor minutes before airtime.
Rui Chenggang didn’t appear on Friday night’s newscast on China Central Television and his chair was empty.
The exact reason for his detention isn’t known. The South China Morning Post said a public relations company once owned by Rui has business ties with CCTV.
Rui, pictured above, is widely known in China and beyond for his “big get” interviews.
He was detained shortly before the start of Friday’s “Economic News” broadcast. His co-anchor went on the air without him.
Last month, Rui’s boss at CCTV’s financial channel, Guo Zhenxi, was detained. Guo allegedly took bribes from companies in exchange for attacks against their competitors on CCTV broadcasts.
Rui, 37, is fluent in English. He had denied being under investigation.
He has 10 million followers on Sina Weibo, China’s version of Twitter.
Among those he has interviewed recently are Bill Clinton, George Soros, Jack Welch, Michael Dell, Bill Ford, and Meg Whitman.
Rui has been profiled by the New York Times and been featured on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.”
Richard L. Cassin is the publisher and editor of the FCPA Blog. He can be contacted here.