Welcome to Pay Dirt—exclusive reporting and research from The Daily Beast’s Lachlan Markay on corruption, campaign finance, and influence-peddling in the nation’s capital. For Beast Inside members only.
A North Carolina real-estate agent who says his Facebook account was hacked years ago was surprised to learn this week that a page he previously used to market local listings was now being administered by a popular conservative media company with ties to Chinese dissident groups.
The Facebook page, titled The News Express and boasting nearly a million subscribers, housed dozens of advertisements encouraging users to subscribe to The Epoch Times. It was one of a handful of vaguely branded Facebook pages used in recent months to market the newspaper, generally with appeals to supporters of President Donald Trump.