HANGZHOU, Nov. 2 -- The leader of China's largest online pyramid selling ring in east China's Zhejiang Province has been jailed for three years with a reprieve of four years, a local court said.
Yin Hong was also fined 300,000 yuan (49,200 U.S. dollars), according the People's Court of Nanhu District in Jiaxing City on Friday.
The multi-level marketing network, running from February 2011, had nearly 10,840 members and 187 franchisees. More than 280 million yuan (46 million U.S. dollars) was involved in scheme by March 2013, when the ring was busted, the court said.
Pyramid selling has been banned in China since 1998 but has remained rife in many less-developed regions. In recent years, the fraud has evolved from touting fake products to more sophisticated fund-raising chicanery and extended its frontier onto the Internet.