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UK police arrest 17 in Chinese student murder case
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Seventeen Chinese nationals have been arrested by British detectives investigating the murder of two young Chinese graduates in Newcastle.

Zhou Qian, from central China's Hunan Province, and her boyfriend Yang Zhenxing from northeastern China's Dalian city, were found dead on August 9 in the flat they shared in Croydon Road, Newcastle. Both had suffered serious head injuries.

Three men are being held on suspicion of murder. The others, who include four women, are being questioned in connection with a number of offences including assisting an offender, conspiracy to commit burglary and immigration offences.

The arrests were made last night during police raids on a number of addresses in the Newcastle area.

Detective Superintendent Steve Wade, who is leading the investigation, said: “As a result of ongoing investigations, officers from Northumbria Police Major Incident Team together with specialist search officers and scenes of crime officers executed search warrants at addresses in Northumbria and Durham.”

It is understood the line of enquiry being pursued by the police is that the murders were carried out by a team of criminals that have been targeting Chinese students in the UK. One theory is that Zhou and Yang attracted the attention of the gang when they advertized a room to let in their flat.

(China.org.cn by John Sexton October 24, 2008)

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