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November 25, 2010

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4-year-old girl kidnapped and murdered

A FOUR-YEAR-OLD girl was kidnapped and killed last Saturday in the city's suburban Songjiang District, police confirmed yesterday.

The victim, surnamed Zhuo, was found dead in a suitcase, her mouth covered with tape, in a hotel room early Sunday morning, police said.

Two men, aged around 20, and a 16-year-old have been detained, officers said. The case was still under investigation last night and the names of the suspects were not released.

The kidnapping was reported at about 8pm Saturday, police said. Zhuo's parents, who run a hotel at Renmin Road N. in the district, received a call from kidnappers demanding a 700,000 yuan (US$105,223) ransom.

They called the police immediately.

Police arrested the youngest suspect in a hotel room at Zhongshan Road M. at 4am on Sunday. The child's body was found in a suitcase under the bed. A forensic examination showed that the girl had been strangled.

The other two suspects were arrested by police soon afterwards. Two are from Anhui Province and one from Shandong Province.

One of the three was an employee of an amusement arcade above Zhuo family's hotel, another used to work there and the third was their friend.

The Zhuos' business boomed during the World Expo, while the arcade hit hard times as it was raided by police for providing machines for gambling.

Zhuo's parents, from Zhejiang Province, said they knew some of the suspects as they often saw each other in the building.

The child was last seen playing on the first floor of the hotel at about 7pm on Saturday evening.


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