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June 8, 2010

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2002 homicide case solved by DNA match

THE long arm of the law has no time limits when it comes to homicide.

Shanghai police proved that by "getting their man" eight years after the stabbing murder of a prostitute in the city.

Officers said yesterday that the man was detained over theft offenses and his DNA was routinely sent to be checked against suspects' samples in the police blood bank.

Bingo! There was a match - and all because of a cut finger.

Police have identified the murder suspect as Qian Baogang, 31.

"The technology was a great help," said a police spokesman with Putuo District, where the homicide occurred. "Meticulous evidence-collection work should also be credited."

Zhou Meixia, 27, the victim, was found dead from knife injuries in a Putuo residential building on February 3, 2002.

The killer left few clues.

"The social connections of the woman were complex," the spokesman said.

Officers processed the crime scene and collected evidence that was submitted for DNA analysis.

A blood sample - believed to be the killer's - was detected.

The mystery was not cleared up until this year when Qian was nabbed in Jiading District for stealing.

Qian then told police he planned a robbery in 2002 "to get some money before going back to my hometown" ahead of the Spring Festival.

He then targeted the woman. He stabbed her after she screamed for help, police said.


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