Chinese national nabbed in Suwon’s torso case

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Chinese national nabbed in Suwon’s torso case

Police arrested a man suspected of committing a gruesome mutilation murder after discoveries of dismembered body parts in southern Gyeonggi since last week.

The Gyeonggi Provincial Police Agency said Friday it arrested a suspect in Godeung-dong, Paldal District of Suwon around 11:30 p.m. on Thursday. The 56-year-old man was an ethnic Korean with Chinese nationality, and the police identified him with the surname Park.

Police said the victim was suspected to be a 48-year-old Korean-Chinese woman who lived with Park. Police identified her by the surname Kim.

After a hiker discovered a black plastic bag containing a woman’s headless, limbless torso on Dec. 4, the police conducted searches in the area while trying to identify the victim. Four more plastic bags containing human flesh and internal organs were discovered in a nearby area on Thursday.

The National Forensic Service concluded that all the mutilated body parts were from the same victim, a post-adolescent female with Type A blood.

Gyeonggi Police said Friday that the suspect refused to give a statement. The police originally scheduled a media briefing at 2 p.m. Friday but canceled it after the interrogation made little progress.

“The suspect continues to exercise his right to remain silent and, as a result, evidence collecting is not proceeding as planned,” a police source said.

Although Park refused to cooperate, the police predicted it won’t have difficulty proving the case based on forensic evidence.

Investigators found traces of human blood in the room where the suspect lived. A DNA test of blood traces in the room matched that of the mutilated body, police said.

They also found the same kind of plastic bags that were used to dispose of the dismembered body parts.

Police said a tip from a Suwon resident played a crucial role in identifying the suspect. The resident informed the police Thursday that Park had signed a temporary lease contract late last month to rent a room with monthly payments, but the tenant disappeared for about 15 days.

Shortly after receiving the tip, police raided the room, conducted a forensic investigation and concluded that Park was a prime suspect. Park was arrested later that night checking into a motel with another woman.

Police said Friday they will soon ask a local court on Friday to issue a warrant to further detain Park for questioning.

The suspected crime site, where the suspect and victim used to live, is in a residential area in Paldal District. It was only 2 kilometers (1.2 miles) from the site of a similar murder committed by Wu Yuanchuan, a Korean-Chinese. He brutally raped, murdered and dismembered a 28-year-old woman he abducted in 2012.

The area is a popular residential district for foreign laborers because of its easy access to public transportation, cheap monthly rental apartments and proximity to many jobs at construction sites and factories.

Police promised a 50 million won ($45,343) reward to anyone who provides crucial information to solve the case. The landlord who informed the police about his tenant is expected to receive the money.

BY SER MYO-JA [myoja@joongang.co.kr ]



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