Chinese bodyguards: Personal protection in the land of the Dragon


Chinese BodyguardsBy Paul Johnstone

This issue we bring you Part II of how being rich in China can be dangerous – unless you have a bodyguard. The security business in China is booming. It’s a special time in the history of China and the country has been in an economic transition. As such, China is no different to many other countries and crimes towards rich people are inevitable. Furthermore, a widening rich-poor gap, the 2008 Olympic Games and the global market are raising safety concerns among the nation’s elite and leaving many of them vulnerable.

This is another reason why private bodyguard services have surfaced and are increasing each year. Like their western counterparts, many Chinese performers and business executives employ bodyguards as a symbol of their status and prestige. However; aside from prestige, another reason for the increase in popularity of having a bodyguard is the crime rate. Whilst serious crimes such as robbery, theft and murder are still less frequent then in western society, they are becoming more and more common in China than ever before.

Chinese criminal gangs are also now renowned for carrying weapons including firearms, allegedly bought illegally from corrupt police or military personnel. Furthermore, there have been a number of major incidents during the last several years including the countdown to the Summer Olympic Games in Beijing. Some of those included the March 2008 hijack of a bus in Xian which was carrying Australian passengers and was hijacked by a Chinese man wearing explosives and threatening to blow it up. Furthermore, there was an alleged attempt by Uighur minorities in China to hijack a plane traveling to Beijing in the same year.

Many Chinese are rushing to join the ranks of one of China’s newest and best paid professions and Chinese bodyguards can look forward to salaries of about $200 USD – $5,000 a month depending on their military/ police background, formal bodyguard training, education, appearance, knowledge of martial arts and foreign languages.

However, whilst many sign up to a world of glamour there are many underlying problems including exploitation of female bodyguards as nothing more than an attractive fashion accessory or for ‘ornamental reasons’. And there are those companies that also require a secretary, public relations officer and a bodyguard, so with some females, they can fulfill them all in one role … Click here to read more