Man accused of killing Chinese scholar facing tougher charge

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) — A man accused of abducting and killing a University of Illinois scholar from China is going to be arraigned on new charges.

Federal court records show that 28-year-old Brendt Christensen is scheduled to appear before a judge Wednesday afternoon. He previously was charged with abducting 26-year-old Yingying Zhang of Nanping, China. But a grand jury last week returned a superseding indictment charging him with the more serious crime of kidnapping resulting in Zhang’s death.

The new indictment alleges that Christensen intentionally killed Zhang and that her death involved torture or serious physical abuse. If convicted of the new charge, Christensen would face the death penalty or mandatory life in prison.

Zhang disappeared June 9, weeks after arriving at the campus in the central Illinois city of Champaign. Even though her body hasn’t been found, authorities believe Zhang is dead.

0 Comments

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, send us an email.