Chinese police say Midea founder rescued after house break-in

Workers wearing protective masks outside Midea factory in Wuhan on March 25, 2020.
PHOTO: Reuters

BEIJING/SHANGHAI - Chinese police said on Monday (June 15) that the billionaire founder of house appliance manufacturing giant Midea Group, Mr He Xiangjian, had been rescued safely after his house was broken into the night before.

Police in the southern Chinese city of Foshan said in a statement that they had received a report on Sunday evening that a private home had been broken into and that its residents' lives were under threat.

They eventually rescued a person surnamed He and arrested five suspects at around 5am local time on Monday morning, the statement said, adding no one was injured.

A Foshan policeman told Reuters that the person was Mr He Xiangjian.

The 78-year-old Mr He founded Midea in 1992 and stepped down as its chairman in 2012, but he continues to be the company's controlling shareholder.

The 2020 Hurun Global Rich List ranked him as the world's 41st richest person with an estimated wealth of 182 billion yuan (S$36 billion).

Midea Group thanked the police and the public for their concern towards the situation on its official account on the Twitter-like Weibo platform, where thousands of users had been speculating over Mr He's situation.

The case is under further investigation, the police said.