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October 24, 2009

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Ex-boyfriend detained in hoax over 'HIV-carrying prostitute'

A BEIJING native has been detained for distributing pornographic pictures of his former girlfriend and raising a public storm by saying she was an HIV-carrying prostitute who had sex with nearly 300 men.

He also allegedly published the names of her purported "clients."

The woman took three blood tests to defend her honor and prove she was not carrying the virus that causes AIDS.

The man, Yang Yongmeng, was caught in Beijing on Wednesday, Hebei Province police reported yesterday.

Yang, 33, told officers that he had been living with the woman from March 2008 until July this year when she said she wanted to split up because Yang refused to divorce his wife and marry her. Yang then asked for compensation from the woman and her family but was rebuffed, police said at a news conference yesterday. To vent his anger, he decided to take revenge.

Yang admitted that he had printed intimate pictures taken of the two of them along with libelous statements and distributed them in the woman's hometown, Hebei Province's Baoding City, in August.

He also sent pictures to the mobile phones of the woman's friends and family members.

At the end of August, Yang told police he opened accounts in the woman's name on many popular online forums and posted the pictures. Impersonating her, he stated in a blog that Yan was working as a prostitute in Beijing and had contracted AIDS after having sex with hundreds of men.

He also admitted he said the woman was raped by her stepfather when she was 15 years and had to go to work in Beijing because her family was too poor to support her.

In the post, Yang published the woman's personal information including her name and address. He also copied phone numbers stored in her mobile phone and listed them as her "clients."

Among the phone numbers were those of two police officers in the woman's hometown who were called by her family to settle the dispute with Yang.

The woman was initially a target of heated criticism by Netizens who were led to believe she was an unrepentant, HIV-carrying prostitute. But the tide of public opinion turned when she surfaced and said it was all a cruel hoax.


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