Chinese student's murder in Tokyo sparks controversy

Chinese student's murder in Tokyo sparks controversy
PHOTO: Video screengrab

The murder case of a Chinese student killed in Japan last year has attracted wide attention online as the case is set to be heard in Japan next month.

On Sina Weibo, a popular social media platform in China, the hashtag #Murder case of Chinese student in Tokyo# has garnered more than 1.8 billion views.

Jiang Ge, a 24-year-old Chinese student from Qingdao, Shandong province, was killed at her apartment in Tokyo on Nov 3, 2016. Jiang was a postgraduate student at Hosei University.

In the early hours of Nov 3, 2016 (local time), Jiang was stabbed to death in the corridor of her apartment by the ex-boyfriend of her roommate.

According to media reports, Liu Xin, the victim's roommate and her close friend, moved in with Jiang after breaking up with her boyfriend two months before the tragedy happened.

Liu's boyfriend, Chen Shifeng, went to Jiang's apartment to look for Liu that afternoon. The three had a quarrel and left the house afterwards. That same night, Liu and Jiang went back to the apartment, with Liu arriving first.

Liu said when she was changing her pants in the house, she heard screaming outside the door. She tried to open the door, but found it was blocked. Then she called the police.

The victim's mother, Jiang Qiulian, blamed Liu for her daughter's death by claiming Liu had locked Jiang out when she was attacked. She also criticised Liu for avoiding her and refusing to explain to her the details of the incident face-to-face after the tragedy happened.

According to a report from theaper.cn, Jiang said Liu and her families refused to answer her request of explaining the incident to her and did not send any condolence to her.

On May 21, 2017, Jiang posted an article on Sina Weibo, exposing the personal information and photos of Liu and her parents, asking web users to offer information about Liu's address and whereabouts.

In response to criticisms, Liu told thepaper.cn that she did not see Jiang's mother after Jiang was killed because she was under the supervision and protection of the police, banned from seeing anyone related to Jiang to protect the validity and confidentiality of the evidence, and said she did not lock the door.

Liu, who is also from Qingdao, was Jiang's classmate during their middle school years, and the two became close friends after meeting each other in Japan.

The case, which is to be held in Tokyo on Dec 10, has become a hot topic online.

One of the most upvoted comments below a post on Sina Weibo said: "I can understand that she (Liu Xin) felt too scared to open the door… But the way she responded to the incident makes me feel a chill. After her roommate's death, she did not even say sorry to the (victim's mother)."

Another comment said: "The murder will be punished by the law, and Liu is probably guiltless from a legal perspective. But her behaviour and attitude (towards the tragedy) is disgusting."

The victim's mother, who is in Tokyo to attend the hearing next month, is collecting signatures from local residents in a call for a death sentence for the murderer.

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