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Man arrested after his neighbor was killed

A man was arrested on charges he murdered his female neighbor over 15,000 yuan (US$2,3389), prosecutors in Shanghai’s Songjiang District said today.

In July, Wu Zhong, 24, met the victim Qin Fang, 45, who rented the house next to his own rented home in Songjiang.

Both were migrant workers. Qin was an online gift shop owner who often asked Wu for help delivering goods since he worked for a courier company, prosecutors said.

After Wu opened his own e-shop, Qin asked him to sell her products in his store, promising to pay him 5,000 yuan a month. Wu agreed and began selling her products in October, but she never paid him, according to prosecutors.

In January, Wu repeatedly asked Qin for the money, but she always came up with an excuse to avoid paying.

According to prosecutors, Wu set a trap for Qin on January 21. He told her a potential client wanted to meet her so she went with him to a room in a hotel on Xinsong Road.

While waiting for the “client,” Wu again asked Qin for the money, saying he needed it to return to his hometown for the Spring Festival. Qin offered to pay him after she sold some more goods, prosecutors said.

During the argument, Qin realized she had been tricked and that no client was coming. When she tried to leave, Wu took out a hammer from his bag and hit Qin repeatedly on her head, prosecutors said, adding he also strangled her to make sure she was dead.

In order to cover up Qin's death, he used her mobile phone to send text messages to her colleagues, telling them she was on a business trip, prosecutors said.

He left the room and returned a short time late with a large suitcase, detergent, scouring cloth, garbage bags and air freshener, prosecutors said. He put Qin’s body in the suitcase and later threw it into a river from a bridge on Husong Road, prosecutors said.

Two days later, Qin's family contacted the police because they couldn’t reach her. Police asked Wu for possible clues about her whereabouts.

Wu lied, saying Qin told him she was going to Qibao Town in Minhang District when he saw her get in a black Volkswagen on January 21.

But Qin's daughter realized he was lying as she tracked down the driver of the unlicensed taxi Wu and her mom had taken to the hotel. The driver told her the hotel name and she found out the truth when she saw the surveillance videos, according to prosecutors.

She then reported her findings to police and Wu was soon detained.


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