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Boy killed after screams for help

A 19-YEAR-OLD man admitted kidnapping and then killing a 5-year-old boy when he started to scream, the Shanghai No. 1 Intermediate People's Court said yesterday.

The defendant, identified only as Zhang, was a minor at the time of the crime, the court heard on Friday.

Zhang confessed he had planned the kidnapping but argued he hadn't intended to kill the boy. "The boy cried for help. I was afraid of being found by others and killed him out of impulse," he said.

Zhang, a Hunan Province native, came to the city last May and worked in a restaurant on Kaixuan Road. He was keen on online games but they were costing him a lot of money and his 1,000 yuan (US$146) a month income wasn't enough.

He decided to kidnap someone for ransom, the court heard, and targeted the son of a man who had a business near the restaurant.

Zhang selected a factory under construction in Qingpu District as a place to hide his hostage, prosecutors said.

On August 17 last year the boy was playing outside and Zhang persuaded him to come with him. He bought the boy some food and put a sleeping pill in his drink.

When he fell asleep, Zhang took him to the factory but when the boy woke up and started to scream he hit him on the head with a brick.

Zhang called the victim's father from the restaurant to ask for 200,000 yuan in ransom. He was caught by police just a few hours later.

The boy's parents asked the court to sentence Zhang to death. The court hasn't yet decided on a verdict.


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