A pharmaceutical company linked to the family that paid $6.5 million in the college admissions scandal has been accused of bribery multiple times

VCG/VCG via Getty ImagesZhao Tao, chairman of Buchang Pharma, speaks during a press conference for the third Global Social Entrepreneurs Forum at Beijing Yanqi Lake International Convention & Exhibition Center on June 14, 2017 in Beijing, China

The father who reportedly paid $US6.5 million to get his daughter into Stanford University as part of the college admissions scandal is the chairman of a Chinese pharmaceutical company that has reportedly been accused of bribery multiple times.

Zhao Tao is the father of Yusi Zhao and the chairman of Shandong Buchang, a multibillion-dollar pharmaceutical company based in China.

After the Los Angeles Times reported that his family was the largest client of alleged ringleader William “Rick” Singer in the college admissions scandal, past reports about Zhao Tao and his pharmaceutical company began to circulate.

Photos emerged of Zhao Tao with Chinese President Xi Jinping, as well as with President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump.

The photos with the Trumps were taken in 2017, the same year Yusi Zhao was admitted into Stanford, according to Buchang’s website.

Chinese media site Xinhuanet reported that the pharmaceutical company’s founder, Zhao Buchang, was accused of bribery in 2002. Sales representatives at the pharmaceutical company have also been accused of using bribes to sell their products to hospital presidents and doctors, the Epoch Times reported.

Zheng Xiaoyu, a former director at China’s Food and Drug Administration from 1998 to 2006, admitted in 2007 to taking bribes from Buchang Pharmaceutical’s founder, Zhao Buchang, according to the New York Times. He was executed in 2007 after being convicted of corruption.

Zhao Tao published a statement on Buchang’s website on May 3, distancing the pharmaceutical company from the college admissions scandal.

Read more:
A student whose parents reportedly paid $US6.5 million to get her into Stanford said before the scandal broke that she was admitted because of ‘hard work’

“I hereby state that my daughter studying in the United States is only a private action of my family, and the funding has no relation with Buchang Pharma,” the statement, translated by the Epoch Times, said.

No one in Yusi Zhao’s family has been charged in the college admissions scandal. Prosecutors have, however, sent Yusi Zhao a target letter informing her she could possibly be investigated, the LA Times reported.

Zhao’s mother last week told the LA Times through the family’s lawyer, William Law, that her family was tricked into believing the $US6.5 million they paid Singer was a donation to Stanford, made “in the same nature” as those that wealthy families are known to make to universities.

Stanford announced in April that it had rescinded the admission of a student connected to the scandal. No Molly Zhao or Yusi Zhao can be found in Stanford’s public student directory.

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