Richard Liu, the billionaire founder and CEO of one of China’s largest e-commerce sites, was arrested in Minneapolis late Friday on suspicion of sexual misconduct, according to police.
JD.com said in a statement on Chinese social media that Liu was falsely accused. The company said police did not find evidence of wrongdoing after an investigation.
Liu was released without bail around 4 p.m. Saturday, according to Minneapolis Police Department spokesman John Elder. He said it was an “active investigation” but that no formal complaint had been filed. He declined to provide details.
JD.com is China’s second-largest online shopping site after Alibaba.
Liu founded the company about two decades ago. JD has been listed on the Nasdaq since 2014 and has grown to around $45 billion valuation. The site sells everything from appliances and apparel to groceries and has a sprawling logistics network for quick delivery.
It’s made Liu a fortune. Bloomberg estimates his net worth to be about $7.3 billion.
JD also has a research center in Silicon Valley that focuses on machine learning and AI, according to its website.
Google recently made a $550 million investment in the Beijing-based company.The two tech firms plan to join forces to sell goods online across Southeast Asia, the United States and Europe in order to better compete with rivals like Amazon and Alibaba.
JD has ambitious plans to take on Western markets. Liu told The Financial Times earlier this year that JD plans to challenge Amazon in Europe as early as 2019.