A Chinese man deliberately got arrested for stealing in Shanghai so he could fulfill his dream of joining a prison performing arts group, according to reports.
The 45-year-old, surnamed Wang, was handed down a fine of 2,000 RMB and sentenced to 10 months in prison after stealing mobile phones from sleeping patients in a Shanghai hospital.
However, Wang, who is from China’s eastern Jiangxi province, registered at the hospital reception using his own ID card and looked directly into security cameras before committing the crime, reports Shanghai broadcaster STV.
When arrested and interviewed by the police, he reportedly said he stole the phones and deliberately got himself caught as it was the only way he could join the award-winning Shanghai Tilanqiao Prison theatre troupe.
“I wanted a stage on which to sing,” Wang apparently said. “Tilanqiao provides this stage, since they get to perform at various prisons. Once I go to prison, I will be able to bring this to a fulfilling end.”
Wang, who has previously been diagnosed with a mild case of schizophrenia, was known to the police due to a criminal record going back 10 years.
While he has indeed been incarcerated in Shanghai Tilanqiao Prison, it doesn’t look like his artistic ambitions have been realised just yet.
In a post on WeChat, the performance group said the project was aimed at rehabilitating criminals, not creating singing stars.
“Not everyone can join this group,” it added.
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Keywords: Shanghai Prison Theatre Group
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