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People's Daily Online>>China Society

Ancient tomb doubter a fraud

(Shanghai Daily)

11:00, December 06, 2011

An anti-fraud activist who flashed into national fame after casting doubts on the authenticity of an ancient warlord's tomb is a fugitive hoaxer, police said.

Hu Zejun, who went by the name of Yan Peidong in the public eye, said he had evidence to prove the ancient tomb said to belong to Cao Cao, a warlord in the Three Kingdoms Period (AD 220-280) was fake, the Shijiazhuang Daily reported yesterday.

It turns out Hu has been involved in several frauds since 2005, swindling tens of millions of yuan, police in Xingtai City in the northern province of Hebei said on Sunday.

Hu has faded from public view since October, when he was informed that police began to doubt his identification. Police are still searching for him, the report said.

The 42-year-old man was among several "experts" across the country accusing Anyang County in Henan Province of forging evidence.

Hu made high-profile media appearances, arguing that the archaeology team leader, Pan Weibin, forged cultural relics, buried them in the tomb and dug them out. Hu lied by claiming to be a chief editor of a Chinese cultural magazine, a councilor of a Three Kingdoms research center and a top official of the UN. He also fabricated his academic credentials, police said, according to the report.

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