From a luxury Manhattan apartment, Chinese billionaire Guo Wengui is plotting a "change of the regime" in Beijing and developing a new media platform with the aim of introducing democracy in the world's most populous country. The fugitive real estate mogul settled in April in New York, on the 18th floor of a hotel facing Central Park, where he's now waiting with his wife for a decision on his claim for U.S. political asylum.
"I want to try and to have rule of law, I want to try and have democracy, freedom, that's my ultimate goal... A change of the regime," he said in a recent interview, setting a timeline of three years. For several months, Guo has been flooding social networks with searing accusations of corruption against China's rich and powerful. Few Chinese tycoons choose dissent. But Guo, whose property was seized and two brothers imprisoned since he fled from China in 2014, says his campaign has been brewing for 28 years.
While some accuse the businessman, who is not shy about publicizing his ostentatious lifestyle, of hypocrisy in his allegations of corruption among China's political elite, Guo denies accusations that he himself is also guilty of graft.
"All the successful businessmen in China, there are only two fates for them: one is to flee the country, the other is waiting to be eliminated," he said. He chose to go on the offensive, posting unsubstantiated yet politically sensitive allegations. His Twitter account, which has nearly 480,000 followers, has been repeatedly blocked since China's Communist Party congress in October, he said. Undeterred, Guo has been developing a new media platform that he intends to launch before the end of December to expose the flaws of China's Communist regime.