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April 2, 2010

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Death sentence for adoptive-mom killer

A MAN who stabbed and strangled his 88-year-old adoptive mother to death and injured his former daughter-in-law was sentenced yesterday to death with a reprieve of two years for murder.

The Shanghai No. 2 Intermediate People's Court said it decided upon a suspended death sentence for Mao Xingguo, 65, because the case was caused by a family dispute and Mao surrendered himself to police.

Mao, a Shanghai native who was adopted by the victim, Liu Wenmei, as a baby, told the court he hated his adoptive mother after she took successful legal action in a district court to have Mao's son removed from her apartment.

Mao said the district court believed his son "abused" Liu and its decision in Liu's favor tarnished his son's reputation. He told his son not to appeal and instead plotted a deadly course of revenge.

Mao was more furious after learning that Liu wanted to sell the apartment to his former daughter-in-law, Hu Feihong, who had helped Liu in the lawsuit.

On the morning of April 27, the day that Liu was supposed to sign a property contract with Hu, Mao carried a knife and a rope to Liu's downtown residence. Mao asked Liu to allow his son to move back into the apartment again.

When Liu refused, he stabbed and strangled her.

Mao put her body on the sofa and waited for Hu, whom he wanted to kill as well, Mao said.

When Hu came with her sister and brother-in-law, Mao stabbed her. Hu ran out of the room and Mao chased her, but her injuries were minor.


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