Businessman David Ji Released on Bail

August 22, 2005

David Ji, an American businessman who has been detained in China since November 2004, was released on bail on August 17, according to a statement released by his company, Apex Digital, Inc. Sichuan provincial police held Mr. Ji under "residential surveillance" beginning in November 2004 and then formally arrested him in May 2005. Ji is reportedly in fair health. In theory, he is now free to travel within China, but may not leave the country.

Police have been investigating Mr. Ji on charges that he committed fraud in dealings with a Sichuan firm. Advocates for Mr. Ji contend that the charges are groundless and that police have detained him for leverage in the commercial dispute between Apex Digital and the Sichuan Changhong Electronics Company, a publicly traded Chinese company. Changhong has been under significant public and official pressure in China for financial losses and alleged misdealing. Mr. Ji's supporters note that he has been forced to sign numerous commercial agreements detrimental to Apex during his detention. Sichuan police also appear to have violated both Chinese law and agreements with the United States on consular notification of Mr. Ji’s detention.

For earlier stories on the case, click here and here.