Suspects held in fake famous oranges case

Chen Huizhi
Five suspects have been detained over allegations that they sold inferior fruit in fake packaging that claimed they were the famous "Chu's oranges" from Yunnan Province.
Chen Huizhi

Five suspects have been detained over allegations they sold oranges in packages that the fruit was from a well-known brand, Shanghai police said on Thursday.

Fake "Chu’s oranges" worth over 3 million yuan (US$456,000) had been sold, according to police.

Chu’s oranges are produced by Chu’s Agriculture in southwest China’s Yunnan Province. The company’s founder, Chu Shijian, was the former director of Hongta Group, one of the largest tobacco producers in China.

His oranges are usually sold from September to December, so those sold in January claiming to be Chu’s caught police attention.

The fake Chu’s oranges were sold by Internet shops owned by a couple in central China’s Hunan Province, but the oranges were first delivered from Yunnan, police said.

The suspects are said to have bought fake packaging from people who are still being sought.

The gang providing the packaging also created a fake Chu’s oranges verification website, police said.

The fake Chu’s oranges, which were of inferior quality, were sold at around 80 percent of the price of the real thing, police said. 

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