Wife of ex-Interpol chief fears for her life

The wife of Interpol's former chief Meng Hongwei has said she fears for her life and that of her twin boys after her husband was detained by Chinese officials, in the latest case of a forced disappearance in Beijing.

Posted: Oct 11, 2018 1:52 PM
Updated: Oct 11, 2018 2:06 PM

The wife of Interpol's former chief has said she fears for her life and that of her twin boys after her husband was detained by Chinese officials, in the latest case of a forced disappearance in Beijing.

In an exclusive one-on-one interview with CNN in Lyon, France, Grace Meng said she received a threatening phone call from a stranger after her husband vanished. She said the stranger told her "two teams" were coming to target her.

Grace Meng was moved to tears as she spoke of her sons, both 7 years old, saying that she had not told them what happened to their father, Meng Hongwei, and that she had kept them away from the television to shield them from the news.

"Maybe they can feel something happened," she said. When they notice her crying, Grace Meng says, she tells them she has a cold.

"I don't want to break their hearts," Meng said. "I'm very -- you know my heart, you know my emotion. They (Chinese authorities) like things under the table, in the dark room," Meng said.

As she spoke to CNN, keeping her face hidden throughout the interview, her mobile phone rang three times. She said the Chinese consulate had been calling incessantly, but that she refused to meet them alone and would only do so with the media and a lawyer present.

Grace Meng's husband had served as Interpol's president for two years when he took a flight to Beijing in late September and vanished. Beijing announced in recent days that he was being held on suspicion of corruption. Chinese authorities have not given details of specific allegations.

When CNN asked Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang about the alleged threats and consulate phone calls at a press conference Wednesday, he said he had no knowledge of them.

"If she's a Chinese citizen, then being contacted by the Chinese embassy or consulate sounds like something that any government would do to their citizens," he told reporters.

Grace Meng now says she has no idea whether she will see Meng Hongwei again.

"I miss him very much. That's why I always wake up at night."

During Xi Jinping's six-year presidency, more than a million officials are estimated to have been punished in a widespread crackdown on corruption, many of them mysteriously disappearing for days as Chinese officials question them.

Critics suggest that the campaign is a tool for Xi to remove political opponents and cement his power.

Grace Meng defended her husband as an innocent man and criticized the Chinese government for the disappearances and lack of transparency over the detentions.

"He is a person of integrity, he strictly abides to the law, and he has worked all his life to help build a society based on rule of law."

When asked why she was speaking out, she said: "For all of China's children, for all of the China's wives, for all of ... China's daddy, mommy."

She said that Meng Hongwei had been worried that authorities would come after him, having seen so many people vanish without explanation.

Grace Meng told of how many elderly Chinese people had lost their adult children in the disappearances, never finding out what happened to them.

"They died but can't see their children, their son, their daughter -- they're lost. You can imagine. I have this responsibility to help the other people."

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 31715

Reported Deaths: 1984
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion9189533
Lake3299167
Cass15826
Allen127766
St. Joseph117034
Hendricks112367
Hamilton109992
Johnson1082104
Elkhart100827
Madison58258
Porter48721
Bartholomew48033
Clark45838
LaPorte40821
Tippecanoe3733
Jackson3611
Howard35618
Delaware35434
Hancock31927
Shelby31421
Floyd31338
Boone28235
Morgan26124
Vanderburgh2482
Montgomery22717
White2268
Decatur22431
Clinton2151
Noble18520
Grant18520
Harrison18521
Dubois1822
Greene16723
Warrick16426
Dearborn16221
Monroe16010
Henry1597
Vigo1477
Lawrence14322
Miami1391
Putnam1337
Jennings1274
Orange12422
Scott1183
Ripley1126
Franklin1068
Carroll922
Kosciusko861
Daviess8216
Steuben792
Newton7410
Wabash722
Wayne695
Fayette654
Marshall641
LaGrange602
Jasper561
Washington521
Fulton471
Rush452
Jay430
Jefferson411
Randolph403
Pulaski390
Clay391
Whitley392
Brown331
Sullivan321
Starke313
Owen311
DeKalb291
Perry270
Huntington262
Benton250
Knox240
Crawford230
Wells230
Tipton221
Blackford201
Switzerland190
Fountain182
Parke170
Posey170
Spencer161
Gibson142
Ohio130
Adams121
Warren121
Vermillion90
Martin90
Union80
Pike60
Unassigned0152
West Lafayette
Broken Clouds
85° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 88°
Kokomo
Few Clouds
86° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 89°
Rensselaer
Broken Clouds
84° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 86°
Fowler
Scattered Clouds
86° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 88°
Williamsport
Scattered Clouds
83° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 87°
Crawfordsville
Broken Clouds
83° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 84°
Frankfort
Scattered Clouds
85° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 88°
Delphi
Broken Clouds
85° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 87°
Monticello
Broken Clouds
85° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 87°
Logansport
Broken Clouds
86° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 87°
Hot and Humid Weather Continues with Some Late-Day Storms Possible.
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events