Chinese police say no sexual abuse in Beijing kindergarten was found
 
A security camera is pictured at the kindergarten run by pre-school operator RYB Education Inc being investigated by China's police, in Beijing, China November 24, 2017. Photo: Reuters
 
Beijing police said on Tuesday night (Beijing time) that they had not found evidence showing there was sexual abuse of children at a Beijing kindergarten run by RYB Education New World Kindergarten listed in New York in September, which once again sparked a nationwide outcry. 
 
Last week, some parents in Beijing accused that their children in the kindergarten in Chaoyang District were sexually molested, pierced by needles and given unidentified pills.
 
On Saturday, Beijing police investigating the case said that they had detained a 22-year-old teacher surnamed Liu from Hebei province adjacent to Beijing. The police said they also arrested another person, also surnamed Liu, for allegedly disrupting social order by spreading false information about the alleged kindergarten abuse.
 
The police said on Tuesday, their investigation showed that the female teacher Liu allegedly used sewing needles to “discipline” children who would not sleep.
 
According to an article circulating on WeChat, a Chinese chatting and messaging platform owned by Asia’s most valued tech firm Tencent, some of the parents said their children described to them a naked adult male conducting “medical check-ups” on unclothed students. The article was later deleted by WeChat administrators. 
 
However, according to the police announcement the parent surnamed Zhao admitted that the story was entirely fabricated and she was willing to apologize to the public. 
 
A video clip which was circulated on Sina Weibo, China’s equivalent of Twitter, on November 23 showing a child saying she was fed white pills given by teachers was also faked by a father who admitted it was not true, according to the police announcement. 
 
The Chaoyang police added that they had recovered an about 113 hours of footage from the school’s surveillance system, but had not yet found any instances of people harming children. But they also said the hard drive storage of the problematic class obtained by police had been damaged, due to “frequent forced power outages” by a staff there. 
 
The latest investigation again triggered a nationwide anger, as many said they do not believe there was no sexual abuse at all when there were so many accusations made by parents. Comments and articles on the issue spread on China’s social media over the night and a technician posted article on WeChat saying that it is abnormal that the surveillance camera is frequently powered off and claiming that there should be memo of the surveillance operations by the kindergarten at Chaoyang education commission. 
 
“What kind of parents would fabricate such kind of scandals about their own kids. It they did, I guess they must be stepparents. I just don’t believe that,” said Molanhua on social media.
 
“Which party’s claim do you believe is true? Well, it seems that unless you have the brain of Holmes, it would be really difficult for you to survive these days,” another called lulu said. 
 
Founded in 1998, RYB provides preschool education services to kids aging from 2 to 6 in China. According to the company’s website, RYB has over 1,300 play-and-learn centers in 300 cities and towns throughout China. The company’s shares plunged 38.4 percent last Friday after the scandal. 
 
In 2015, a court in northeast China’s Jilin province found two teachers guilty of physically abusing children at one of RYB’s kindergartens in the city of Siping of the province. According to Reuters citing a court ruling document, staff at the kindergarten used needles and intimidation tactics to abuse many of the children under care on multiple occasions. 
 
On Wednesday morning, RYB said on its Weibo page that they feel “sad” and “shameful” about the scandal and “have no face begging for forgiveness.” 
 
At least two New York law firms have started investigations into RYB Education which may have issued misleading business information to investors.
 
Chaoyang police said on Tuesday that they would continue investigation into the claims of child abuse to the very bottom and severe punishment would be given to those who violated the rights of children, according to the law. 

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