"Wealthy" Chinese woman killed for phone, ring

Mon Dec 22, 2008 7:20am EST
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BEIJING (Reuters) - Police in northern China have arrested a man for killing a woman who boasted of her wealth, but he was only able to steal a mobile phone, a gold ring and less than $100 in cash, state media said on Monday.

The official Xinhua news agency said the woman, surnamed Wang, ran a cleaning company in Baotou in Inner Mongolia and her husband was a long-distance bus driver.

During dinner with somebody they thought was a friend, a painter surnamed Yang, she boasted that her business was doing well and her husband also earned a lot of money, said the report, carried on Xinhua's website (www.xinhuanet.com).

"The man then came up with the twisted idea of murder in order to get the money," it added.

Yang forced his way into Wang's home early one morning carrying a knife, and stabbed Wang as she was crying out for help.

"He then stole a mobile phone, about 600 yuan ($87.65) in cash and a gold ring," Xinhua said.

Yang was arrested earlier this month, it added.

China is trying to narrow a growing gap between the rich and poor, worried that public anger over it could stoke social unrest.

($1=6.845 Yuan)

(Reporting by Ben Blanchard, Editing by Dean Yates)