Thousands of people have taken part in an online auction to buy 13 luxury cars that belonged to an executed mining tycoon and crime boss linked to China’s disgraced former security tsar Zhou Yongkang.
Viewed by about a million internet users, the auction organised by the Chengdu Railway Transportation Intermediate Court in Sichuan province saw bidders push the prices of the cars to more than 10 times their starting price, the West China City Daily reported.
The cars belonged to the Sichuan mining tycoon Liu Han, who was executed last year after he was found guilty of 13 charges, including murder, organising casinos, running a mafia-style gang and illegally selling firearms.
Liu had ties to the former security chief and Politburo Standing Committee member Zhou as Sichuan province was one of his power bases. Zhou was sentenced to life in jail last year for taking bribes, abuse of power and intentionally leaking state secrets.
The auction of Liu’s luxury cars, most of them top-end sports vehicles including BMWs, Lamborghinis and Rolls-Royces, drew widespread interest, with many people travelling to Chengdu to inspect them at a garage.
A BMW X5, which started bidding at just 22,000 yuan (HK$25,500), sold for 292,000 yuan, the report said. On the market in China, it costs about 800,000 yuan, the article said.
A Lamborghini with less than 7,000km on the clock and a starting price of 470,000 yuan sold for 2.04 million yuan. It is worth some 3.5 million yuan on the market, according to the report.
A Rolls-Royce whose starting price was 730,000 yuan was sold for 3.2 million yuan. Its market price is about 3 million yuan.
Car industry experts told the newspaper that bidders at the auction may have been bargain hunters or people interested in owning the cars because of Liu’s fame and notoriety.