China executes serial killer



Beijing: China on Thursday executed an "extremely cruel" serial killer who murdered 11 people and sold their flesh as "ostrich meat" at a market.

Zhang Yongming, 57, who was sentenced to death for killing 11 people in southwest China's Yunnan province was executed today, the state-run Xinhua news agency quoted sources from a local court as saying.

He was sentenced to death in July 2012 for strangling 11 people in Jinning county from March 2008 to April 2012, according to a ruling from the Kunming Intermediate People's Court.

After the murders, Zhang used various means, including dismemberment, burning and burial, to destroy the evidence. He was arrested in late May 2012, the report said.

The court said Zhang's acts were "extremely cruel" and that the consequences were "extremely serious."

Hong Kong newspaper 'The Standard' had reported that police feared that Zhang had fed human flesh to his dogs while selling other parts on the market, calling it "ostrich meat".

The crimes were not Zhang's first, as he was given a death sentence with a two-year reprieve for intentional homicide in 1979. He was released in September 1997 after receiving a number of sentence reductions.

After his release, Zhang was given a plot of land by his village and a subsistence allowance from the local government, but he continued to commit crimes, according to the ruling.

Twelve police officers have been penalised for dereliction of duty regarding the murders, including Jinning police chief Da Qiming, who was sacked from his post, the report said.

PTI