- 22-year-old Lu Wanzhen was abducted from a condominium parking lot in Markham, Ontario, on Saturday, Canadian police said.
- He was shocked with a stun gun when he resisted, police said.
- The motive of the kidnapping is not known, but Canadian media noted that multiple Chinese students in Canada had been abducted for ransoms in the past.
- Police said: “Abductions like this, especially with this level of violence used are very rare in this country.”
Canadian police are urgently looking for Lu Wanzhen, a 22-year-old from China who was attacked with a stun gun and kidnapped in Markham, Ontario, last Saturday.
Lu, who also goes by “Peter,” had been with a female friend in an underground parking lot at a condominium building in an affluent area of Markham, part of the Greater Toronto area, shortly before 6 p.m. on March 23, York Regional Police said.
According to police, three men jumped out of a black Dodge Caravan with stolen licence plates, in an effort grab him. As Lu resisted, one of the men shocked him with a stun gun, and the kidnappers forced Lu into the van and sped off.
Lu’s friend was neither injured nor taken, which suggests that the kidnappers were targeting Lu only. Police said she was left traumatized and is helping police in their investigation.
Police spokesman Andy Pattenden said, according to the AP: “Abductions like this, especially with this level of violence used are very rare in this country.”
Police are currently seeking four suspects, all of whom are men. At the time of the kidnapping the man holding the stun gun was wearing a jacket with the Under Armour logo on it, while another one was wearing a black jacket with the Canada Goose logo, police said.
The force said it recovered the black van on Sunday night. They found it Toronto without the stolen plates on, Pattenden told reporters on Monday.
Motive unknown, but ransom scams have hit several Chinese international students in recent years
The motive for the kidnapping remains unknown, though CBC noted that at least three Chinese international students in the the Toronto region alone had been swept up in a ransom scam since 2017.
The three Chinese nationals were kidnapped and their abductors demanded ransoms from ther families, according to CTV News. All were found safe that November.
Lu studies at an unnamed school in Toronto, and reportedly drives a white Lamborghini, a Rolls-Royce, and a Range Rover, the AP reported.
Canadian police have not yet heard of any ransom demands on Lu’s parents, CBC and the AP reported.
It’s not clear how long Lu has been in Canada, and police have not released any details about his family. Members of his family are now travelling to Canada, the AP said.
A spokesman for the Chinese Consulate-General in Toronto told the AP, however, that the consulate “have been in close contact and communication with the police, urging them to rescue the kidnapped student as soon as possible,” and that it had contacted Lu’s parents in China.
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