In late September 2011, police in Luoyang, Henan province, arrested Li Hao (李浩), a former firefighter who held other government positions, for allegedly kidnapping and holding six women in a basement apartment and using them as sex slaves. The case was not reported publicly until September 22, when Guangzhou’s Southern Metropolis Daily broke the story, which quickly drew national attention. On the day the report ran in Southern Metropolis Daily, the reporter responsible for the story, Ji Xuguang (纪许光), says he was questioned by local police in a hotel in Luoyang. Officers wanted to know who had leaked the story to Ji, and said this act was “a violation of state secrecy.” This story broke just as another case, in which a local government claimed the resume of a young official was a “secret,” was drawing attention to the claim of secrecy as a means of covering up potentially damaging news. In this cartoon, posted by artist Kuang Biao (邝飚) to his blog at, an official (presumably) stands naked an covers his private parts with a placard that reads: “State secrets.”

David Bandurski

CMP Director

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