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China’s Tencent says former executive in graft case

BEIJING (AP) — Tencent Inc., operator of the popular WeChat social media service and China’s most valuable tech company, said Friday the former general manager of its video unit and other employees have been detained in a corruption case.

An audit of the video unit last year raised doubts about its acquisitions process, said a Tencent statement. The company said it notified police, who have detained five or six employees.

The company identified the executive as Liu Chunning, also known as Patrick Liu. A rival company, Alibaba Group, where Liu went to work after leaving Tencent, said Thursday that Liu had been detained in connection with his former work at Tencent.

Tencent said Liu also had previous posts in strategic planning and network management but it denied what it said were rumors that he was an assistant to the company’s founder, Ma Huateng, one of China’s richest entrepreneurs.

The company based in the southern city of Shenzhen identified two other employees who were detained by the surnames Zhang and Yue but gave no other details.

Tencent has reported four instances of possible misconduct to police, according to a report by the Web portal Sina.com which cited what it said was information from Tencent.

It said that included employees receiving several hundred thousand yuan (tens of thousands of dollars) from an agent for a company in the western city of Xi’an.

Tencent, which makes most of its money from online games, reported profit of 6.9 billion yuan ($1.1 billion) for the first quarter of 2015 on revenue of 22.4 billion yuan ($3.6 billion).

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Tencent Inc.: www.tencent.com

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