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Home sale ruled invalid due to murder cover-up

A Shanghai court ruled invalid a property transaction contract because the seller concealed the fact of a murder that took place in his apartment two years ago, court officials said today.

The Pudong New Area People's Court ordered the seller surnamed Fan to refund the buyer 910,000 yuan (US$143,005) plus transaction fees and agent commission totaling 8,220 yuan.

Fan sold his apartment in Pudong to a young couple in February. The couple planned to move to their new home after redecoration.

But they learnt from a neighbor that a murder happened in their house in 2010 when Fan leased it a man who killed his mother and younger brother in the apartment. Afterwards, Fan decided to sell the property through a real estate agency.

After hearing this, the couple asked to return the property to Fan, who rejected them. So they sued Fan in April and told the court they dared not to live in the house after hearing about the murder.

The court supported the plaintiff and ruled the transaction invalid because Fan concealed a crucial piece of information in the transaction and the value of his house depreciated because of the murder.


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