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Two Chinese diplomats shot dead in Cebu resto

Sino consul, husband held for questioning
By: - Bureau Chief / @InquirerSLB
/ 12:08 AM October 22, 2015

CEBU CITY—A birthday luncheon for a staff member of the Chinese consulate in a restaurant here turned tragic on Wednesday when the husband of a consular officer  allegedly shot and killed two of her fellow officers.

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The motive, however, remained unknown as the suspects—Li Qing Ling, 60, and his wife, Consul Gou Jing—were still in police custody undergoing questioning.

Chief Supt. Prudencio Tom Bañas, police director for Central Visayas, told the Inquirer that investigators had difficulty getting the statement because they had to look for an interpreter.

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The fatalities were identified as Chinese Deputy Consul Sun Shan and finance officer Hui Li. They died while receiving treatment in two different hospitals, said the city’s police director.

Chinese Consul General Song Rong Hua was wounded but was in stable condition in a hospital here, Bañas said.

Councilor Dave Tumulak, head of Cebu City’s Command Center, said Sun suffered a gunshot wound in the neck and Hui  in the head.

Bañas said Song made a reservation for a function room at Lighthouse Restaurant on General Maxilom Avenue here to celebrate the birthday of a staff member.

SHOOTING IN LIGHTHOUSE Police scene of crime investigators enter Lighthouse Restaurant on Gen. Maxilom Avenue in Cebu City following the shooting of two Chinese diplomats allegedly by a fellow Chinese consular officer over lunch Wednesday. CHRISTIAN MANINGO / CEBU DAILY NEWS

SHOOTING IN LIGHTHOUSE Police scene of crime investigators enter Lighthouse Restaurant on Gen. Maxilom Avenue in Cebu City following the shooting of two Chinese diplomats allegedly by a fellow Chinese consular officer over lunch Wednesday. CHRISTIAN MANINGO / CEBU DAILY NEWS

At least nine Chinese nationals attended the luncheon, including Li and Gou, Bañas said.

He said that based on the statements of food servers, the group was taking lunch about 1:20 p.m. when an argument broke out.

 

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IN CUSTODY Suspect Chinese Consul Gou Jing is being held by police for questioning. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

IN CUSTODY Suspect Chinese Consul Gou Jing is being held by police for questioning. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Heated argument

“They knew there was a heated argument because voices were raised,” he said.

The argument was followed by gunshots in the function room.

There were reports that Hui was shot first but Bañas could not confirm this.

He said the police had yet to determine what caused the argument  and who were involved.

FIGHTING FOR LIFE Hui Li, a finance officer of the Chinese Consul Office who was shot in Lighthouse Restaurant, gets medical aid in an ambulance. Hui later died in a hospital. CHRISTIAN MANINGO / CEBU DAILY NEWS

FIGHTING FOR LIFE Hui Li, a finance officer of the Chinese Consul Office who was shot in Lighthouse Restaurant, gets medical aid in an ambulance. Hui later died in a hospital. CHRISTIAN MANINGO / CEBU DAILY NEWS

Gun recovered

Recovered from the crime scene were one .45 cal. Colt Defender, three empty shells, two deformed slugs and one live ammunition.

Police said that based on  closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage, Li was seen holding the gun as Hui fell, apparently after shooting her.

He then placed the gun on the table. In another footage, a  woman, whom the police identified as Gou, was holding the gun while walking apparently out of the restaurant.

“That is why she is considered a person of interest,”

Bañas said, adding that  the details of the shooting remain sketchy.

An investigator marks the crime scene where two Chinese diplomats were killed inside a restaurant in Cebu province, central Philippines on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015. Two Chinese diplomats in the Philippines were killed and the consul-general was wounded Wednesday by a Chinese attacker armed with a pistol during a birthday celebration at a restaurant, police said. (Alan Tangcawan via AP)

An investigator marks the crime scene where two Chinese diplomats were killed inside a restaurant in Cebu province, central Philippines on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015. Two Chinese diplomats in the Philippines were killed and the consul-general was wounded Wednesday by a Chinese attacker armed with a pistol during a birthday celebration at a restaurant, police said. (Alan Tangcawan via AP)

Arrested in consulate

Li and Gou were arrested at the Chinese consulate office in the Cebu Business Park after they were able to slip past the police cordon.

The couple were identified through the CCTV footage.

Tumulak said he received a call from the Chinese consulate shortly after the shooting about 1:20 p.m. to verify reports on Song’s condition.

Some members of the Chinese community in Cebu were also calling other city officials to verify reports on the shooting, he added.

“It’s sad that the incident happened in the city, especially during a time when Mayor Michael Rama is out of town,”  Tumulak said. Rama is on an official trip in Japan.

A spokesperson at the Chinese Embassy in Manila, Li Lingxiao, said she could not comment immediately.

“Our embassy is still verifying the facts. We’ll update you as soon as I have anything new,” Li said in a text message to Agence France-Presse (AFP).

The Department of Foreign Affairs spokesperson, Charles Jose, also said he had no comment, as authorities were still determining what happened.  With reports from Doris C. Bongcac, Inquirer Visayas;  Nancy Carvajal and Christine Avendaño in Manila; and AFP

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TAGS: Cebu, Consul Gou Jing, Crime, Features, Global Nation, Gou Jing, Li Qing Ling, nation, Sun Shan
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