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Man and ex-wife convicted of murder
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A man was sentenced to death and his ex-wife handed a 15-year jail term for kidnapping and murdering a Taiwanese man, Shanghai No.1 Intermediate People's Court said yesterday.

The court also ordered the man's assets to be confiscated and fined the woman 30,000 yuan (US$4,391).

Zhang Mei, a karaoke bar hostess from Jiangsu Province, met the victim, who the court identified as Chen, at a nightclub at the end of 2006. After Li Yongqian, Zhang's ex-husband, learned of the relationship, he decided to blackmail the businessman.

On May 2, 2007, Zhang called the victim and lured him to her home saying she wanted to return some money she had borrowed. When the victim arrived, Li and Zhang bound his hands and feet.

Zhang found 2,000 yuan and a bank card on the victim. After forcing Chen to tell them the pin number, Zhang went to a bank but there was only 80 yuan in the account.

The pair threatened to call the man's family to demand a ransom of 200,000 yuan. When Chen resisted, Li murdered him and dismembered his body, the court said.

After concealing the body parts in the mud by a nearby river, the pair fled to Jiangyin in Jiangsu Province, where they were caught by police two weeks later.

Li had previously been convicted of robbery and manslaughter. After being released from jail in 2005 he lived with his ex-wife. Li was unemployed, the court said.

(Shanghai Daily October 16, 2008)

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