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Player Sentenced for 3.5 Years After Trying to Recover His Sold Account

By Johnson Ge
Nov. 3, 2022 updated 09:35

A player was fined and sentenced for 3.5 years in prison for trying to recover a game account he sold for 120,000 CNY (~ 16,000 USD), according to a recently published case report by the Second People's Court of Shanghai on October 31.

Trading player accounts are usually considered against EULA and forbidden by game companies. However, there's always a thriving grey market for game accounts on third-party websites in China. The third-party platforms act as trusty middlemen, holding the account information until the transaction is completed.

In a way, this is like the seller permits the platform or the buyer to "takeover" their account, similar to an account-stealing process. Thus, it is a common fraud practice for sellers to reclaim their account for being "stolen" after receiving money. Currently, Chinese courts would rule the cases in favor of the account buyer, despite the fact that the transaction violates the game service contract.

And violation of EULA was Xiaoqi's exact argument on the court. He claims that the transaction was illegal in the first place, and hence him retrieving his account should not be considered a crime. The courts ruling showcased the other side of the consideration: "The game accounts have both exchange value and use value, and accounts trading are realistic transactions that are protected by law."

Source: Shanghai No.2 Intermediate People's Court