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July 20, 2009

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Family of 5 bludgeoned to death

A FAMILY of five who had immigrated to Australia from China were bludgeoned to death in their home in a Sydney suburb in what police said yesterday was a targeted killing.

The motive was not clear in the "extremely violent" killings in the early hours of Saturday, The Associated Press reported, quoting New South Wales Homicide Commander Geoff Beresford.

Min Lin, 46, his wife Lilly, 44, two sons aged 12 and 9, and Lilly's 39-year-old sister were killed by blows to the upper body and head, Beresford said.

"It's extremely violent and certainly unusual in my experience to have this many people murdered on one occasion," he said.

The only member of the immediate family left alive is the Lins' 15-year-old daughter, Brenda, who was away on a study trip to New Caledonia, according to the Daily Telegraph.

The family ran a convenience store for more than six years after immigrating from China. Their bodies were found by a relative who went to the house on Saturday morning on Boundary Road, North Epping, when the store did not open on time.

Earlier this year, Lin gave evidence about a robbery of an armored van across from his store, but Beresford said that had not been linked to the killings. He ruled out robbery.

"We're open-minded but we believe it was quite targeted," Beresford said, adding that the police had no suspects.

The Sydney Morning Herald said police had not ruled out the possibility of a murder-suicide. Another family member, an uncle believed to live nearby, is being questioned.

Police sealed off a park across the road from the family's house, scoured the ground and seized at least one vehicle for examination.


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