Taking loans is pretty easy in some parts of the world but paying back debts is never easy or in a lot of cases even possible. Many incidents have been heard of people attempting to evade loans by doing outrageous things. A Chinese woman recently pulled off a stunt of the sort and got plastic surgery to change her appearance entirely, all for escaping the $3.7 million debt.
The debt epidemic is on the rise in China ever since the state allowed personal loans in 2014. People are borrowing recklessly at ridiculously high-interest rates that have them drowned in debts way above their heads. The 59-year-old Zhu Najuan attempted to evade the debt after a court in the city of Wuhan in Hubei province ordered her to pay the borrowed $3.7 million.
— NRG Radio (@NRGRadioKenya) July 31, 2017
Chinese state news agency Xinhua reports that Zhu fled to Shenzhen after the court orders, and this is where the police arrested her, surprised with her entirely new face that made her look much younger. A police officer commented that “We were very surprised at the scene. She looked in her thirties and was different from the photos we had.” After getting caught Zhu confessed to her crime and revealed that she had borrowed bank cards to pay for the plastic surgeries. She had also used other people’s identity cards for traveling the country by train.
It is not sure what fate awaits Zhu, but her crimes include fraud, identity theft, all initiating with her failure to pay the debt. As China attempts to become a credit society, it is faced with many problems. The nation’s household debt has reached to 50 percent of the country’s gross domestic product. Wuhan’s judiciary has so far detained 186 people who failed to pay their debts and Zhu is not the first one who has resorted to taking extreme measures.
Just last year, a 33-year-old Chinese father had reportedly abducted his own son and sold him off to a stranger he had met in a chat room, for a mere $6,500. The amount barely contributed to his debt of $450,000, but the little boy lived with a stranger for a week until the father was arrested in an internet cafe.
While all of these stories may have been exaggerated or maligned, the debt problems engulfing the Chinese citizens are undeniable. A province in China has even created a blacklist marking people who did not pay their debts. Anyone calling these people first listens to a recorded message saying “please urge this person to fulfill their legal obligations.”
A pretty unique way to escape debts, isn’t it?