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South Wales Police

Man found guilty of murdering teenager Wenjing Lin at a Chinese takeaway

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Chun Xu has been found guilty of murdering 16 year-old Wenjing Lin and attempting to murder her step-father, Yongquan Jiang.

The 32 year-old who lived in Merthyr Tydfil was convicted at Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court on Tuesday, November 9 (2021).

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Chun Xu’s offences were committed at the Blue Sky Takeaway on Baglan Street, Treorchy on Friday, 5 March, 2021.

Xu had visited his teenage victim’s family on March 4 and spent the evening with them. The court heard that Xu was seeking revenge over a money debt that he owed the family. He had gambled away money given to him by Wenjing Lin’s mother which he was meant to send home to a mutual friend in China.

The following day, on March 5, he murdered Wenjing by strangling her and left her laying on the floor by the counter of the shop.

He then lured her step-father into the basement where he stabbed him multiple times with two knives before turning a knife on himself.

South Wales Police’s investigation proved that Xu’s actions were premeditated when they seized his phone. On it they discovered he had used internet search engines to find out if fingerprints could be damaged by fire just hours before the attacks. The court also heard that Xu had taken a knife with him to the premises.

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Chun Xu had pleaded not guilty to murder, attempted murder and wounding with intent, but pleaded guilty to manslaughter and unlawful wounding.

But he was tried for murder and attempted murder by the Crown Prosecution Service.

The jury returned a unanimous guilty verdict on all charges, after which the judge told the defendant that he is facing life imprisonment when he is sentenced on Friday (November 12).

Senior Investigating Officer Detective Chief Inspector Mark Lewis, said: “On behalf of South Wales Police, I am pleased that the trial has resulted in the successful conviction of Chun Xu for the murder of Wenjing and for the attempted murder of Yongquan Jiang. The evidence gathered and heard in this case demonstrated that this was a pre-meditated and callous murder of an innocent, bright, talented and loved 16 year-old girl and a brutal attack on her step-father with an obvious attempt to kill him.

“During our investigation it became clear how popular and well-loved Wenjing was by all who knew her. This incident brought shock to the close knit communities of Treorchy and Treherbert and has been devastating for Wenjing’s family and friends.

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“My over-riding thoughts today are with Wenjing’s mum who has lost her loving daughter who I know was also her closest friend. I hope that this conviction will help in some way but I also know that the days, months and years ahead will be extremely difficult.

“I want to thank the community for their support and assistance, both at the time of the incident and during the investigation which followed. I would also like to pay tribute to the diligence of the Crown Prosecution Service and Counsel, and the officers and staff in my investigation team for the outstanding professionalism and tenacity shown to bring this case to justice.”

Wenjing’s mum bravely read out a tribute to her daughter after the guilty verdict was announced (Image: South Wales Police)

Folllowing the guilty verdict Wenjing’s mum bravely shared these words and paid tribute to her daughter and to the local community who have been so supportive since her tragic loss:

“My beautiful daughter has gone and I can never forgive you. I have lost my beloved daughter, my everything. She cared for my husband and I, helping us to communicate with English speakers .

“My husband was a very strong and fit young man who had never felt tired before this vicious brutal attack. He has severe mental and physical injuries from the brutal attack and now he even struggles to work, often suffering nightmares – seeing Wenjing lying on the floor by the counter in the reception area on that horrible day. The treatment he must receive from the hospital will go on for a long time and his scars will remain forever.

“My daughter’s school and friends miss her so much, I know they are suffering from the pain and the loss of their best friend. They will never recover.

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“Before that awful day, she was a happy girl who loved spending time with her friends and was enjoying school. We visited the school to speak with them – my daughter had passed all her GCSEs with A* but she will never know her results that she worked so hard for.  I am so proud of her achievements. She loved school so much – her teachers called her the model student.

“I am still not able to comprehend why you would do this to her. I cry every day and watch videos of her to feel close to her and hear her voice.

“Our lives have been turned upside down. I cannot imagine my life without her – she was my only child and you have broken our hearts forever.

“I have to begin counselling to help me but nothing will ever take away the pain that you caused.

“I am so thankful and touched all support given to us by the school, the local community, our friends, the crown prosecution service, and the police have provided to us. We are so relieved that justice has been done and that he is being punished for what he did.

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“I hope there will never be another innocent victim like Wenjing.

(Lead image: Family photo / South Wales Police)

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South Wales Police

Body found at Waunarlwydd property identified as missing disabled woman

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The body of a woman found at an address at Clos y Deri in Waunarlwydd has been formally identified as that of missing disabled woman, Kelly Randall.

South Wales Police confirmed the identity of the 45-year old after her body was found at the Waunarlwydd property on Monday (16 May).

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Police had previously issued an appeal to find Kelly after she was last seen in Port Talbot over a week previously on Tuesday 3 May.

A 67 year-old man initially arrested for murder in connection with Ms Randall’s death has now been released on police bail while investigations continue.

A 42 year-old man has been released with no further action.

South Wales Police say the family of Ms Randall are being supported by specially trained officers.

Detective Superintendent Darren George from South Wales Police’s Major Crime Team said: “A forensic post mortem examination took place yesterday, Wednesday 18th May, and the cause of Ms Randall’s death is unexplained at this time and the investigation is ongoing. As a result, further tests will now be carried out over the coming weeks.

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“I would like to thank the local community for their patience and assistance over the past few days as the investigation has progressed.”

Ms Randall’s daughter, Demi Davies has paid tribute to her mother.

Ms Davies said: “It is with sad regret that I announce the passing of my mum, Kelly Randall. To all that personally knew her knew she had a lot of difficulties in her life that she had to face on a daily basis, but I don’t want to sit here and talk about those today or what people remember her for.

“Instead, I would like people to remember her for her old ways, the old, the real Kelly before addiction took over this beautiful woman’s life. Mam, you were incredibly beautiful, and every time I see your photos my heart feels deep but empty and my eyes flood with tears. I remember the wonderful times and childhood memories you give me and my strong amazing brothers, I remember a cosy warm home, food on the table and wonderful magical Christmas’s. You kept us immaculate, and everyone used to comment on how nice you kept my hair and how glossy and shiny you got it.

“I might not have appreciated it much then, but now, I see a woman with lots of pain and struggle trying to put her kids first whilst facing her own battles and demons and giving them everything she could. You loved us in every way you knew how and tried protecting us from everything you knew that was bad. You tried your best against all odds, and you were an incredible mother and everyone that knew you will say the same. Nobody can ever take that away from you. I certainly have adopted your feistiness and gob, and I am so proud you kept that spirit in you until the very end. I will make sure I keep that in me until the very end also.

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“You are finally free of your addiction and back with all of your brothers and sisters, mum, dad, nephew and other family. You are no longer suffering mam, you’re at peace now. I will always love you and have you in my heart, and when we reunite again one day, I will give you the biggest nurturing hug. Rest in paradise my beautiful mam. My heart and life will never be the same without you, but I will sure make you proud.”

(Lead image: South Wales Police)

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Port Talbot

Police launch appeal to find missing disabled woman

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South Wales Police have launched an appeal to find missing Waunarlwydd woman, Kelly Randall.

45 year-old Kelly was last seen in Port Talbot on Tuesday 3 May.

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A wheelchair user with one leg, Kelly is described as being around 5ft of medium build with brown hair which is tied up – possibly in a bun.

She was last seen wearing black jeans and a black coat.

She has links to both Swansea and Port Talbot.

South Wales Police are appealing for anyone who may have seen Kelly, or who has information which will help them to find her, to contact them online or by calling 101 quoting occurrence number 2200149152.

(Lead image: Family photo / South Wales Police)

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Port Talbot

Port Talbot scaffolder jailed for heading-up drug gang

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A Port Talbot scaffolder has been jailed for 12 years for heading up a drugs gang.

Three men, who were part of the organised crime group which sold illegal drugs, were jailed for a total of 23 years after an 18-month long Police investigation.

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Operation Formby is an investigation conducted by South Wales Police Force Intelligence & Organised Crime Unit into the drug trafficking activities of Daniel Baker and his gang.

Daniel Baker, aged 30 from Sandfields, Port Talbot, was the head of the organised crime group involved in trafficking Class A Cocaine and Class B Ketamine throughout the South Wales region, and in the Oxfordshire area of England.

His connections with Oxfordshire were through his legitimate scaffolding employment.

He was arrested at his home address on August 18, 2021, where he was found in possession of a significant quantity of Class B Ketamine, a firearm and in excess of £44,000 cash.

The investigation uncovered that Baker had been supplying Cocaine since at least 2016 and had been using various individuals to collect debts on his behalf, collect and courier the drugs for him, and other individuals to supply both Cocaine and Ketamine on his behalf.

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Baker and his gang were proven to have supplied 1kg of Cocaine between 2015 and 2018 and a further 9kg between May 2021 and August 2021. The 10 kilograms of Cocaine would have had an estimated street value of between £1.1 million and £1.4 million.

The co-defendants convicted in the conspiracy to supply Cocaine with Daniel Baker were Steven Hughes, age 46, from Abercynon and Mark Lapper, age 41, from East Hanney, Oxfordshire.

The three appeared at Swansea Crown Court today (Monday 9 May 2022).

Daniel Baker pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Supply Class A Cocaine, Possession with intent to supply Class B Ketamine and Possession of a s.5 Firearm. Baker was sentenced to 12 years in prison.

Steven Hughes pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Supply Class A Cocaine and Possession of Class B Cannabis. Hughes was sentenced to 8 years in prison.

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Mark Lapper pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Supply Class A Cocaine. Lapper was sentenced to 3 years in prison.

Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) proceedings are now ongoing in relation to these individuals to recover assets realised as a result of their drug trafficking activities.

Detective Inspector Russ Jenkins from the Force Intelligence & Organised Crime Unit said: “Organised Crime Groups such as these have continued to operate within our local communities and have been brazen in their activities and believed they are beyond the reach of law.

“Our investigators have worked tirelessly, and continue to utilise all opportunities available, to investigate these offences and successfully prosecute those involved.

“The continued success of these operations provides reassurance and confidence to the communities of South Wales.”

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(Lead image: South Wales Police)

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