China's Alibaba says zero tolerance on graft

Top Chinese e-commerce operator Alibaba said Friday it would not tolerate corruption, after a senior manager was detained on suspicion of taking bribes in the latest graft scandal to hit the company.

Yan Limin, former general manager of Alibaba's online group buying arm Juhuasuan, was under under police investigation over bribery, the company said in a statement.

Yan was removed from his post in March due to "major breach of duty in the management of the Juhuasuan team" and had been investigated by Alibaba internally over his personal involvement in graft before police detained him, it said.

"Behaviour of this sort will not be tolerated," a Hong Kong-based spokesperson for Alibaba Group, who asked not to be named, told AFP.

The company did not specify what wrongdoings Yan committed.

Juhuasuan is the online platform where consumers of Alibaba's retail arms Taobao and Tmall can get group discounts offered by third-party retailers.

The case is the latest in a series of employee corruption scandals to hit the company.

Last year, the head of Alibaba's business-to-business arm resigned after a company probe found about 100 salespeople colluded with or negligently assisted more than 2,300 sellers in fraudulent listings.

Alibaba also punished 28 employees and handed seven to law-enforcement authorities in the first half of this year following an internal audit as part of its efforts to fight corruption, it said in the statement.

"We noted a handful of isolated situations over the past 18 months that once detected were acted upon swiftly," Alibaba's spokesperson told AFP.

Alibaba group had more than 76 million registered users by the end of last year, up 23.5 percent from 2010.

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