Parents sue writer after online abuse

The parents of a 3-year-old girl who died from cancer last year are suing a writer who accused them of not using the money raised from a funding platform on her treatment.According to Minhang District People’s Court, Wang Taiyou and his wife Yang Meiqin said Chen Lan, who is described as an experienced public interest activist, is said to have posted false accusations online without verification and revealed their address. The posts unleashed a torrent of abuse. The couple demanded she withdraw the claims, make an apology and pay compensation. Chen said she hadn’t intended to hurt the couple and that all her online statements had a source. After she had confirmed the statements were false, she deleted them and made a public apology.She denied she had ever released anything about the family’s personal information.The two sides both disagreed on accepting mediation and the court will give its verdict later.Wang Fengya was diagnosed with an eye tumor in October 2017. The family raised money for her treatment via online funding platform Shuidichou.However, in April last year, Chen questioned the parents online and thought they were taking advantage of the girl to get some money. She said the couple were not active in their daughter’s treatment and suspected that they had used part of the money to treat their son’s harelip, which she considered to be fraud and a sign of “son preference.”Chen later made another post saying that a volunteer who went to help the family had gone missing after being beaten up by them.After investigating the case, police in Henan Province announced there was nothing fraudulent about the fundraising. Chen apologized online but claimed she had never mentioned anything about the amount of money they raised or that the money had been diverted for other uses.The family rejected her apology and insisted on bringing the matter before the court. 

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