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Ride-hailing woman passenger killed in China

Updated August 26, 2018

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BEIJING: A ride-sharing passenger in the eastern Chinese city of Wenzhou was raped and killed by a driver for China’s largest ride-hailing firm, local police said on Saturday, the latest violent crime to fuel safety concerns about the service.

Following the incident, Zhejiang province, where Wenzhou is located, ordered Didi to suspend its carpooling service there while the company addressed safety issues, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

Police in Yueqing city, which is part of Wenzhou, said on their official microblog that the 20-year-old woman, surnamed Zhao, got into a Didi carpool vehicle at 1pm on Friday, and sent a message to a friend at around 2pm seeking help before losing contact.

Police said they found the suspect, a 27-year-old driver called Zhong, at about 4 am on Saturday. They said Zhong confessed to raping and killing the passenger, and that the victim’s body had been recovered and an investigation was continuing.

Didi said the driver had passed background checks and had logged in with his authentic ID and had been confirmed by facial recognition on the day. However, the driver had altered the car’s licence plate before the trip, the company said.

Published in Dawn, August 26th, 2018