The Shocking Murder of 3 Body Problem’s Billionaire Producer

The Shocking Murder of 3 Body Problem’s Billionaire Producer


A Murder Case Takes Shape

Within a day of his passing, state-run media in China were reporting that Lin’s death was being investigated as a suspected murder by poisoning, possibly through the pu-erh tea he was known to drink.

Three days after Lin died, Shanghai police said in a statement that they had detained Xu Yao on Dec. 18 “in accordance with the law while the relevant investigative work is carried out.”

Lin had hired Xu, a lawyer by trade, in 2017 to head up The Three-Body Problem Universe, a subsidiary of Yoozoo devoted to adapting the books for the screen in China, according to Variety.

While Chinese authorities didn’t share any details about their case against Xu, the murder of one of the nation’s richest men unsurprisingly caused a media frenzy. The magazine Caixin reported that Xu was disgruntled after being demoted and—being a huge fan of Breaking Bad—built a whole lab to test various poisons he purchased on the dark web.

In announcing the guilty verdict and death sentence, the Shanghai First Intermediate People’s Court stated on its official WeChat account, according to the Times, that Xu plotted to poison Lin and four others in the office who were sickened but did not die after drinking tainted beverages between September 2020 and December 2020. 

Xu did not confess, the court said, and did not reveal what type of poison he used, which may have complicated efforts to treat Lin at the hospital.


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