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Nov 25, 2019

Chinese Businessman Murdered on George Price Highway; 4 Persons Detained

Zheng Liu

The Chinese community is trying to make sense of the murder of well-known businessman, Zheng Liu.  Liu, who is one of the principals of the Eighty-Eight chain of stores was executed near Old Belize on Saturday night and as investigations take place, it is be believed he was lured to his murder on Saturday night.  Zheng got a telephone call while he was at the Boulevard Plaza, one of four stores on Central American Boulevard.  The message was that his newly imported vehicle had broken down on the George Price Highway near Old Belize. Zheng drove to the area to help but instead was ambushed and executed.  Four men drove off in his vehicle, but before that, they dumped his body on the road side. Police recovered the vehicle soon after and detained four men who were fleeing from the vehicle in the area of Gungulung. News Five’s Duane Moody has the following report.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

Just before nine o’clock on Saturday night the blast from gunfire echoed in the distance near the Old Belize Compound on the George Price Highway. Police would arrive around nine p.m. to discover the body of Zheng Liu, known to many as the manager of the Boulevard Plaza on Central American Boulevard in Belize City. The twenty-eight-year-old was killed inside his vehicle in the area and his body dumped on the side of the road, before the culprit escaped in Liu’s vehicle.

 

Joseph Myvett

ACP Joseph Myvett, Head, National Crimes Investigation Branch

“Mister Liu was at his business place on Central American Boulevard when he was called to assist a friend who apparently had broken down on the George Price Highway. And in the process, he then picked up another male person who rode along with him to the area where they were met by two other persons and during that process, Mister Liu was apparently shot.”

 

News Five has been informed that Liu received a call around eight o’clock from an associate; that person had brought in a car from the U.S. for Liu. The deceased was told that a person who was interested in purchasing the vehicle was out test-driving when the car broke down near mile four on the George Price Highway. Liu picked up the associate and went to find three persons at the scene; one pulled out a firearm and shot Liu at close range as he sat in the driver’s side of the vehicle, which was later used by all four men, including the associate, as the getaway car. Police intercepted the car on Holy Emmanuel Street in the Gungulung area.

 

ACP Joseph Myvett

“Police did locate that in Belize City; the vehicle which he used to go to that area.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“Was that in someone’s possession? Who had that vehicle?”

 

ACP Joseph Myvett

“Yes it was. I am not going to reveal that, but yes it was in someone’s possession.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“Are you able to say if that’s one of the persons detained?”

 

ACP Joseph Myvett

“Yes it is. Police investigation so far has led to the detention of three male persons whom we believe played a role in this investigation. So far, statements were recorded from them whilst the investigation is still ongoing. Those statements were submitted to the Director of Public Prosecution for her perusal and further directive.”

 

But what is the motive behind this latest homicide against a member of the Chinese community?

 

Zheng Liu

Reporter

“Is there any indication that maybe Mister Zheng was lured to his death or someone took advantage of the opportunity that his friend was in distress to ensure that they would catch him in that location they know he would be?”

 

ACP Joseph Myvett

“From what the investigation is showing, we do not necessarily believe that because he did have some conversations with those persons who were at the area prior to the shooting.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“Sir, so would you say these three persons all orchestrated this murder or planned to set him up?”

 

ACP Joseph Myvett

“No, I would not say that. At this point in time, the investigation is not showing that either.”

 

Reporter

“So is it a situation that Mister Zheng was killed in a random act of violence sir?”

 

ACP Joseph Myvett

“Could have been because obviously as I have mentioned before there was some conversation between him and those persons.”

 

Johnston Ou

Johnston Ou, Chairman, Belize Chinese Association

We are very puzzled and we don’t know why this happened because he is such a nice guy and I don’t think he had any personal issue with anybody.”

 

Since the news of his killing hit social media, there has been an outpour of comments on the character of Liu by those who came in contact with him during their shopping at the Eighty-Eight group of companies.  Liu leaves behind his girlfriend and their unborn child.

 

Johnston Ou

“He grow up in Orange Walk and in the city for quite some time. Due to the response that we get from the Facebook as the news went out, it gets like over a thousand five hundred comments and all comments are positive. That shows that he is such a nice person and lovely person by the neighbourhood and the community. So this guy…many people miss him.  Our community is regrettable what has happened. And it is not only for us; it can happen to anybody. And I just hope that this is the last time. We thanks for the police and make a quick response towards this incident. We prepared two certificates to show our appreciation to the police department.”

 

Four persons have been detained in connection with this latest homicide. Duane Moody for News Five.


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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